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A fatal drowning accident at Strand Beach, A man missing at a beach near to Sonwabe, False Bay, A non-fatal drowning at Melkbosstrand where a male teenager was resuscitated before being transported to hospital in a critical condition, 3 incidents where lives were saved with the contribution of NSRI pink rescue buoys in bystander rescues, at least 9 non fatal drowning accidents and hundreds of successful intervention rescues carried out by lifeguards at beaches around the coast over this past weekend - NSRI, lifeguards and all water rescue networks are appealing to the public to exercise caution in and around water.

We are asking bathers to only swim at lifeguard protected beaches and parents to ensure that a responsible adult is dedicated to watching over children while they are in and around water.

Warm weather is forecast by SA Weather Service to persist around parts of South Africa and we are appealing to the public to be safe around water.


Alan Meiklejohn, NSRI Gordons Bay station commander, said:

At 14h51, Sunday, 23 January, lifeguards at Strand Beach reported CPR in progress on a man that was recovered from the water lifeless.

GB Med ambulance services assisted lifeguards at the scene but sadly after all efforts to resuscitate the man were exhausted he was declared deceased.

It is believed that this was a drowning accident.

Police have opened an inquest docket.

The body of the man has been taken into the care of Government Health Forensic Pathology Services.

Condolences are conveyed to the family of the deceased man.

On 14 January 4 local men were rescued after their 4 meter rigid inflatable hull craft suffered engine failure off-shore of Macassar.

They were swept towards Seal Island where our sea rescue craft located them and they were towed safely to Gordons Bay harbour without incident.


Vaughn Seconds, NSRI Strandfontein station commander, said:

At 16h14, Sunday, 23 January, NSRI Strandfontein duty crew, City of Cape Town (CoCT) lifeguards, CoCT Law Enforcement and Traffic Services responded to a beach near to Sonwabe, on Baden Powell Drive, following reports of a drowning in progress.

On arrival on the scene one male was found to be out the water and safe and a 28 year old male, from Phillip, was missing in the surf zone.

Eye witnesses confirmed that the man was last seen disappearing under water.

The EMS/AMS Skymed rescue helicopter joined sea rescue craft from NSRI Strandfontein and from NSRI Simonstown and NSRI lifeguards and CoCT lifeguards on the scene where an extensive air, sea and shoreline search was conducted but sadly there remains no sign of the missing.

The SA Police Services and a Police Dive Unit will continue in an ongoing search operation.

While rescue services were on that scene searching a male aged in his mid 30's got into difficulty in the surf zone at the same location and he was rescued by lifeguards and treated on the scene for non-fatal drowning symptoms.

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

Earlier in the day CoCT Monwabisi lifeguards rescued a man in the surf zone at Monwabisi Beach and he was transported to hospital in a stable condition by WC Government Health EMS ambulance.


Peter O'Hanlon, NSRI Melkbosstrand station commander, said:

At 15h18, Sunday, 23 January, NSRI Melkbosstrand lifeguard unit responded to reports of a drowning in progress near the Melkbosstrand slipway.

While a search was underway, which included a rescue craft jetrib and lifeguards in the water, the teenager was located.

The 16 year old male, from Atlantis, had been swept across the beach to in front of the lifeguard tower and he was recovered from the water lifeless by lifeguards.

CPR (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation) efforts were commenced.

Life Healthcare response paramedics, Melkbos Neighbourhood Watch, Law Enforcement, SA Police Services, Netcare 911 ambulance services, ER24 ambulance services, Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services, WC Government Health EMS, City of Cape Town (CoCT) lifeguards, Avenue Response and ADT responded and assisted.

Paramedics were able to successfully resuscitate the teenager who was transported to hospital in a critical condition.


Darren Zimmerman, NSRI Simonstown station commander, said:

At 08h40, Saturday, 22 January, NSRI Simonstown and CMR (Cape Medical Response) were activated following reports of a drowning in progress at Glencairn Beach.

On arrival on the scene we found a bystander had used an NSRI pink rescue buoy, that is stationed at that beach, to successfully rescue a person from t6he water who was not injured.

At 15h11, Sunday, 23 January, NSRI Simonstown duty crew launched the sea rescue craft Donna Nicholas and Spirit of Surfski 2 and rendezvoused with a 12 meter fishing vessel with 4 crew and 8 guests onboard, 2 nautical miles off-shore of Kalk Bay harbour, following a request for assistance after the vessel experienced gear box failure.

The vessel was towed into Kalk Bay harbour without incident and no further assistance was required.


Mike Shaw, NSRI Mykonos station commander, said:

At 15h34, Saturday, 22 January, NSRI Mykonos duty crew were activated following reports of a drowning in progress at Paradise Beach.

An NSRI off-duty crewman, used an NSRI pink rescue buoy and a female Good Samaritan used an NSRI pink rescue buoy to rescue 2 people who were in distress.

While swimming a man and a girl were swept out to sea in rip currents and an elderly lady on a body board was swept out to sea at the same time.

Pink rescue buoys, used by our NSRI Mykonos off-duty crewman and by a young female Good Samaritan, contributed in saving the lives of the girl and the man while the body board, used for floation, contributed in the elderly lady being rescued safely to the beach.


Quentin Power, NSRI Ballito station commander, said:

At 19h26, Sunday, 23 January, NSRI Ballito duty crew, Police Search and Rescue, Metro Police Police Search and Rescue and Ethekwini lifeguards responded to Umdloti North Beach following reports of a drowning in progress.

Netcare 911 ambulance services, Marshall Security and CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) also responded.

2 persons were rescued from the tidal pool, 1 by a Good Samaritan and 1 by security officers from Marshalls Security.

A search commenced for a 3rd man believed to be missing.

While a search was underway eye-witnesses confirmed that the man who was suspected to be missing had exited the water earlier and no further assistance was required.


Johnathan Bakker, NSRI Kommetjie station commander, said:

NSRI Kommetjie duty crew were activated at 14h13, Sunday, 23 January, following reports of multiple people in distress at Scarborough Main Beach.

On arrival on the scene it was found that surfers had rescued 3 people from the water and no further assistance was required.

Earlier in the day bystanders had intervened when 4 people got into difficulty in the water. They were reportedly caught in rip currents when bystanders intervened, one armed with a pink rescue buoy. The bystanders rescued 3 of the swimmers safely to the beach and the Good Samaritan with the pink rescue buoy was able to bring the 4th person safely to the beach.


Luke van Riet, NSRI Bakoven station commander, said:

NSRI Bakoven duty crew launched a sea rescue craft and Camps Bay CoCT lifeguards responded to Glen Beach at 15h40, Sunday, 23 January, following reports of a drowning in progress.

On arrival on the scene we found that bystanders had assisted a person from the water and the person was not injured and no further assistance was required.


Tokkie Livingstone, NSRI Port Edward deputy station commander, said:

At 14h44, Saturday, 22 January, NSRI port Edward duty crew responded to Silverbeach following reports of a drowning in progress.

On arrival on the scene we found Emithonsaneni lifeguards had rescued a male, from Middleberg, out of the water and he was not injured.

On Saturday, 15 January, at 07h38, NSRI Port Edward duty crew responded to Main Beach following reports of a drowning in progress.

On arrival on the scene we found that Emithonsaneni lifeguards had rescued a 26 year old male and a 13 year old female from the surf zone.

KZN Government Health EMS attended at the scene and both patients were transported to hospital.

The man was in a serious but stable condition and the teenager in a stable condition.


Laurent Eray, NSRI Plettenberg Bay deputy station commander, said:

On Saturday 15 January, at 16h59, Plettenberg Bay Municipal lifeguard Rashaad Plaaitjies, while on a patrol at the Lagoon side of the Piesang River, he noticed a man floating face down in the water in amongst the reeds.

He instructed his friend to run to the lifeguard station at Plettenberg Bay Central Beach to alert the lifeguards for assistance while he raced to the scene.

NSRI Plettenberg Bay duty crew had received a phone call alerting us to the drowning in progress and the station was activated by siren and by sms. Our NSRI rescue swimmers responded by private vehicle while our NSRI rescue vehicle responded with the necessary medical equipment.

On hearing the news the Lifeguard Captain, who had been monitoring the other end of the lagoon, noticed Rashaad's friend running towards them shouting for help.

Plettenberg Bay Municipal lifeguards responded towards the scene where Rashaad had managed to get the casualty to shallower water in amongst the reeds and mud.

The lifeguards managed to pull the casualty out of the water and they commenced CPR (Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation) efforts that were joined by NSRI medics and by WC Government Health EMS paramedics.

CPR was successful and the man was transported to hospital by EMS ambulance in a serious butr stable condition.

NSRI commend the lifeguards for their swift response that contributed to saving the man's life.

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