Local NSRI rescue personnel kept busy
Swift drowning prevention efforts by National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) duty crew saved the day when locals who were in difficulties were brought to safety in two separate rescue operations.
The first incident occurred last Friday (25 September) when a middle-aged woman was rescued after she had apparently gone for a swim near the jetty in Strand.
According to Alan Meiklejohn, NSRI’s Gordon’s Bay Station 9 commander, duty crew were activated following reports of a drowning in progress after a woman apparently fell off the jetty at Strand Pavilion into the water and was swept out to sea at 12:54.
“NSRI crew responded to our satellite NSRI station at Strand Beach and the sea rescue craft Rescue 9 Bravo was launched. NSRI shore controllers and rescue swimmers responded directly to the scene,” he said.
The City of Cape Town’s water rescue network was alerted by the NSRI Emergency Operations Centre which along with the police, City’s Fire and Rescue Services, GBMed
Rescue ambulance service, ER24, provincial government Health EMS rescue squad and Wilderness Search and Rescue responded to the incident. Law Enforcement and its marine unit were placed on alert.
“On arrival on the scene, a fully clothed woman was found being swept out to sea in rip currents at Die Poort,” Meiklejohn said.
“An NSRI rescue swimmer jumped into the water from the pavilion and swam out to the woman, who was floating on her back, and she was secured by the rescue swimmer as the sea rescue craft arrived on the scene.”
The woman, a 58-year-old Somerset West resident, told DistrictMail on condition of anonymity that she was at the beach with friends when she jumped off the pier for a swim.
“It was an error of judgement to swim,” she said. “The sea was rough and the current took me in.”
She recalled turning back and battling to swim ashore. “It is all thanks to God that I am alive,” the resident declared.
She was allegedly assisted with the final stretch of the swim and brought safely to shore. According to a paramedic on the scene, she was treated for mild hypothermia before being transported to hospital in a stable condition for further medical assistance.
The resident is grateful to the
NSRI and emergency services for their assistance, and to her husband and family for their support and prayers.
In a separate incident on Sunday (27 September), NSRI duty crew were called into action to assist locals on a boat out at sea, after the vessel had apparently experienced engine failure.
Meiklejohn said the NSRI Gordon’s Bay duty crew were activated following a request for assistance from people on a boat off-shore of Strand. “The sea rescue craft Spirit of Surfski and our NSRI jet-rib
Rescue 9 Bravo were launched,” he said.
“On arrival on the scene, an NSRI rescue swimmer was transferred onto the casualty boat and he was able to re-start their outboard motor. The casualty boat was escorted by our NSRI sea rescue craft to Harbour Island under her own motor power where their boat was recovered and the rescued persons required no further assistance.”