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12 December 2011

Kommetjie and East London NSRI called out on Sunday


At 11h42 on Sunday 11th December NSRI duty crew were called out for a 5 meter ski-boat capsized at chimneys channel at the Kommetjie slipway with 5 people onboard, an adult and four children.

Our NSRI volunteers, the SA Police Services, Metro EMS, CMR (Cape Medical Response), Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services and SA National Parks members responded.

Two members of the public, Keith Huskisson, 51, from Tokai, and Steve Blair, 57, from Newlands, had completed a regular morning crayfishing on Steve’s boat, a 5 meter rigid inflatable rubber-duck, at Kommetjie and had recovered their boat onto its trailer when they noticed a boat capsize with an adult and 4 children onboard all landing up in the water.
At first Keith, who was still in his wet-suit, considered running along the rocks, adjacent to where the boat had capsized, and swimming out to assist but after consideration decided that the risk was too great in the big swells and the two men agreed to rather re-launch their boat despite the big swell coming through the channel.
“We couldn’t stand idle and watch,” said Keith, “we had to do something, particularly because we could see children were in the water and in grave danger”.
They launched their boat and were timing the swells, before heading out of the channel, when NSRI rescue swimmer Nick Marnitz arrived on-scene and requested to come onboard their private boat to help with their rescue efforts.
On reaching the casualties, in a 2 to 3 meter swell, the skipper steadied the boat while Nick, borrowing Keith’s fins, jumped into the water to help the children while Keith hauled them all onboard.
The two men admit that they took a risk by launching, almost becoming casualties themselves when their motors propellors went through what now appears to be the same kelp bed that may have caused the casualties motors to cut out. But once all of the 5 casualties and the NSRI rescue swimmer were safely onboard, they hightailed to shore and are commended by NSRI for bravely playing an integral role in saving the lives of the 5 casualties.

NSRI Kommetjie then launched their sea rescue boat WAVESCAPES and the casualty boat was recovered.


At approximately 11h49 on Sunday 11th December NSRI East London were alerted to a drowning at Kayser Beach.
Metro EMS ambulance, a Metro EMS rescue squad and a Metro EMS helicopter responded.
According to reports on arrival a man, believed to be in his 40′s from Pretoria, was on the beach and was declared dead at the scene.
It is not known to NSRI who rescued the man from the water.
He had been fly-fishing in shallow surf when he was swept out to sea by rip-currents and drowned.
NSRI remind vacationers to the coast that the full moon Spring Tide will last for another 5 to 6 days. The strongest rip-currents of the month prevail during Spring Tide which happens twice a month – at full moon and again at new moon.

The sea rescue craft WAVESCAPES