CAPE TOWN – The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) on Wednesday reported several fatalities around South Africa’s coastline.
NSRI spokesperson Craig Lambinon said the service was activated late morning on Monday when a 59-year-old man collapsed after surfing at Melkbosstrand beach in the Western Cape from a suspected heart attack.
Efforts by bystanders performing CPR, taken over by paramedics, failed and the man was declared dead on the scene.
In Richard’s Bay on Tuesday, NSRI staff responded to reports of a drowning in progress at Palm Beach, Alkantstrand.
“On arrival on the scene, Meditrax ambulance services were already in attendance and reported two men in distress being swept out to sea by rip-currents.”
Lambinon said rescue swimmers swam through the surf-line and managed to rescue a man, who despite extensive efforts was declared dead on the beach.
“An extensive sea and shoreline search has revealed no sign of the second man and a Police Dive Unit and Police Borderline unit will continue with an ongoing search operation,” Lambinon said.
It is believed that the missing man is from India and working in South Africa, while the deceased man, also from India, has South African citizenship.
Police have opened an inquest docket.
The NSRI, meanwhile, appealed to the public on Wednesday to stop using sky lanterns as they are easily confused with distress flares.
According to Lambinon, sky lanterns are a paper and wire frame with a candle that is is released into the are until the candle burns out.
Lambinon said a full-scale search and rescue operation was initiated, but no vessels were found to be in distress.
Despite this, the NSRI monitored the situation throughout the night.
PHOTO: © Twitter / @NSRI File: The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) on Wednesday reported several fatalities around South Africa’s coastline.