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Jonathan Kellerman, NSRI Durban station commander, said:At 17h32, Tuesday, 20 October, NSRI Durban duty crew were activated by NSRI EOC (Emergency Operations Centre) following an alarm raised from a member of a local paddling club, who was in Richards Bay at the time, after he had received a distress phone call from 2 local men, age 65 and 61, reporting that they were in distress on a double surfski off-shore of Umhlanga.The member of the paddling club raised the alarm confirming that both men were reporting to be in the water in distress and they were holding onto the double surfski.The KZN surf rescue network were alerted.NSRI Durban duty crew launched the sea rescue craft Spirit of Surfski 6 and an NSRI sea rescue vehicle, Life Healthcare response paramedics, Metro Police Search and Rescue and eThekwini lifesaving lifeguards responded to the shore at Umhlanga.NSRI Ballito duty crew were activated.One of the men was wearing ultra bright clothing making it possible to spot them from the shore despite light that was fading quickly and the bright clothing worn by that man contributed to their lives being saved.Our sea rescue craft arrived on the scene and following a search hampered by light that had faded we found them a kilometer out to sea off-shore of Breakers Hotel and we rescued both men and recovered their surfski.The men were exhausted and they confirmed that they had been in the water for at least an hour after they were unable to get back onto their surfski after capsizing during a downwind paddle.Treatment was immediately initiated by our NSRI medics for severe hypothermia and we brought them to our sea rescue station where Life Healthcare Response paramedics assisted with treatment for hypothermia.Following medical treatment for hypothermia both men required no further assistance and they were released.Friends of the men collected them from our sea rescue base.NSRI are appealing to water users launching any kind of craft onto water to download and use the NSRI RSA SafeTrx.In this case, in fast fading light, it appears that the men had struggled to make a distress phone call while they were in the water and suffering from hypothermia.NSRI RSA SafeTrx:NSRI’s Free App, RSA Safetrx is available for download.The NSRI’s free RSA SafeTrx application is available to download from the Apple App Store and Google Play StoreRSA SafeTrx includes a number of new features for small craft users:
    • An Emergency Call button which allows you to quickly make a distress call from the application
    • Share your real-time track with family and friends during your trip
    • Build and maintain your own safety prelaunch checklist
    • Choose and alert individual emergency contacts for each trip
    • Automatically initiates a search process should you not close your trip before your chosen ETA
Free RSA SafeTrx Google Play Store downloadFree RSA SafeTrx Apple App Store downloadNSRI RSA SafeTrx takes the 'Search' out of a Search and Rescue in an emergency.By pressing the emergency button on the app NSRI Emergency Operations Centre and Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre are immediately alerted to the emergency and the position of the emergency is indicated on a computer screen giving responding rescue resources the exact position of those in distress.-ENDS-
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