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At 11h03, Wednesday, 6 October, NSRI Mossel Bay duty crew were activated following Police reports of a drowning in progress at Diaz Beach, Mossel Bay.

Andre Fraser, NSRI Mossel Bay station commander, said:

The sea rescue craft St Blaize Rescuer and Rescue 15 Bravo were launched while NSRI rescue swimmers, By Grace ambulance services and the SA Police Services responded.

It was reported that 2 male children were in difficulty in the surf line.

On arrival on the scene we found one 11 year old local male was safely out of the water and not injured while a local surfer had secured a 12 year old local male in the water, assisting the child by using his surfboard for floatation.

An NSRI rescue swimmer reached them in the surf line and rescued the child to the shore.

The surfer is commended for his intervention.

The child was medically assessed by paramedics before being released to family members with the advice to monitor the child for non-fatal drowning symptoms.

While returning to the sea rescue station NSRI were alerted to another incident, reportedly a 9 year old male who went missing in the sea, at Diaz Beach, earlier and this incident had been reported to Police at around the same time as the drowning in progress but in a separate incident.

The 9 year old local child was reportedly witnessed disappearing below the water surface at around 09h30 at Diaz Beach.

NSRI Mossel Bay sea rescue craft, By Grace ambulance services and Police, supported by a private helicopter, a private fixed wing aircraft and a Law Enforcement and Traffic Services drone, conducted an extensive sea, air and shoreline search but there remains no sign of the missing 9 year old local child.

A Police Dive Unit will continue in an ongoing search operation.

Police have opened an investigation.

Our thoughts are with the family of the missing child in this difficult time.

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