Update 31/10/2018 20:18 The yacht and crew have arrived and are safe in Mossel Bay harbour.
SOUTHERN CAPE and EASTERN CAPE:
At 07h00, Wednesday, 31st October, NSRI and MRCC (Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre) were alerted by the owners of the yacht Ariel reporting the yacht and her 6 crew overdue from making contact and last contact had been made with the yacht on Monday, 29th October, at 17h30.
They had departed Langebaan on the weekend and are headed for Richards Bay.
The owners were concerned that the yacht may have been caught in the Monday night storm when their last known position was believed to be 29 nautical miles off-shore of Danger Point, between Hermanus and Agulhas.
MRCC initiated plotting an estimated search area deep sea between Cape Point and Port Elizabeth, taking the storm pattern into account it was estimated that if that had been their last position at that time on Monday they may have sailed with the storm to deep sea beyond Mossel Bay and they could be riding the weather towards Port Elizabeth or if damaged and at the mercy of the sea they could be deep sea between Cape Point and Mossel Bay.
NSRI stations Simon’s Town, Hermanus, Agulhas, Witsand, Still Bay, Mossel Bay, Wilderness, Knysna, Plettenberg Bay, Oyster Bay, St Francis Bay, Jeffreys Bay, Port Elizabeth and NSRI ASR (Airborne Sea Rescue) were placed on alert and in remote areas requested to investigate any yachts sheltering in their Bay.
An African Wings aircraft on a routine flight volunteered to keep a watch over the Southern Cape region.
Telkom Maritime Radio Services initiated attempts to raise the yacht by VHF radio communications and place a VHF radio all ships alert for ships and vessels at sea to be on the lookout.
At 08h30 the yacht crew replied to Telkom Maritime Radio Services VHF radio communications and confirmed that they were safe and we believe that they had run with the storm to deep sea off-shore of Mossel Bay and they confirmed that they are heading towards Mossel Bay harbour from the deep sea.
NSRI, MRCC and Telkom Maritime radio Services remain on alert and we are expecting them in Mossel Bay harbour tonight.
TO REPORT A SEA RESCUE EMERGENCY DIAL 112 FROM A CELLPHONE