At 15h02 on the 24th of January, while NSRI Table Bay‘s Spirit of Vodacom was returning from the Koeberg search area (See Article – Swiss National Rescued by NSRI) they were activated to respond to a reported drowning in progress at Bloubergstrand.
Pat van Eyssen, NSRI Table Bay station commander, said that their rescue craft was at that time only minutes from the scene and on arrival it was determined, by on-scene SA Police Services patrol officers, that a 24 year old local man, from Table View, had been swimming when he disapeared beneath the surf and a 22 year old man, believed to have been a by-stander and believed to have no connection to the man in difficulty, a Malawian National living in Woodstock, who witnessed the man in difficulty in the surf had gone into the surf to try to save him when he too disapeared.
NSRI Melkbosstrand, the Metro Ambulance and Rescue Services, a Police Dive Unit and ER-24 ambulance services were activated to join the SA Police Services and NSRI Table Bay who were on the scene.
Pat said that on the rescue crafts arrival on-scene immediately NSRI rescue swimmers were deployed from the rescue craft into the surf to begin a sweeping line free-dive search and the 22 year old male was found beneath the surface by one of the rescue swimmers and he was brought ashore where Metro paramedics and ER-24 paramedics performed Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) efforts but after all efforts to resuscitate the man were exhausted he was declared dead by paramedics.
Pat said that extensive search efforts, including shore patrols by the Police patrol officers and by NSRI volunteers, 3 NSRI rescue craft deployed to search at sea, Police Divers and NSRI rescue swimmers conducting sweeping line free-dive searches, to find the 24 year old male, who is presumed to have drowned, were suspended late yesterday afternoon after all efforts to find him were exhausted and today, 25th January, Police Divers and Table View SA Police Services patrol officers are continuing with the search.
Police have not released the names of the victims.