At 04h44, Sunday, 26 June, NSRI EOC (Emergency Operations Centre) were alerted by Telkom Maritime Radio Services and by MRCC (Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre) of a Saldanha Bay 24 meter fishing vessel capsized and that there were casualties in the water 8 nautical miles South of Cape Point following a VHF marine radio Mayday distress call intercepted by Telkom Maritime Radio Services.
Darren Zimmerman, NSRI Simonstown station commander, said:
NSRI Simonstown, NSRI Hout Bay and NSRI Kommetjie duty crew were activated and WC Government Health EMS Metro Control was alerted.
MRCC informed NSRI that there were fellow fishing vessels in the vicinity and that they were reacting to assist.
While all 3 NSRI rescue stations were preparing to launch sea rescue craft confirmation was received, from Telkom Maritime Radio Services and by MRCC, that all 12 crew were accounted for and safe onboard 3 fellow fishing vessels.
It was confirmed that fishing vessel Oceana Concord had safely rescued 7 casualty crewmen, the fishing vessel Oceana Mercury had safely rescued 4 casualty crewmen and the fishing vessel Alert III had safely rescued 1 casualty crewman.
NSRI Simonstown was stood down after confirmation was received that none of the 12 casualty crewmen were injured.
NSRI Hout Bay crew and NSRI Kommetjie crew remained on high alert at their NSRI rescue stations while EMS Metro Control, NSRI EOC, MRCC and Telkom Maritime Radio Services remained on high alert until all 3 fishing vessels, with all 12 casualty crewmen, were safely in Hout Bay harbour and no further assistance was required.
During daylight on Sunday morning NSRI Kommetjie dispatched the sea rescue craft Spirit of the Vines and located the capsized fishing vessel in the vicinity of the initial capsizing.
A life raft, located in the vicinity, and lighting, were secured to the upturned hull by NSRI.
A second life raft was located adrift, off-shore of Platbos, Cape Point, and that life raft was recovered onto the NSRI rescue craft and brought to NSRI Kommetjie rescue station.
Telkom Maritime Radio Services are broadcasting an all ships alert navigational warning - warning marine traffic of the drifting capsized vessel.
The owners of the casualty fishing vessel are arranging a salvage operation which is underway.
It is believed that the vessel capsized in under a minute.
The skipper and crew of the casualty vessel are commended for their swift reaction to abandon their vessel.
NSRI commend the swift response of all involved and the skippers and crew of the 3 fishing vessel's are commended for successfully rescuing all 12 casualty crewmen.
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