At 15h33 on Saturday 3 December 2011, NSRI were alerted by eye-witnesses to two men being swept out to sea on a rubber-duck at Pringle Bay and already 400 meters off-shore and being blown further out to sea by strong off-shore winds.
NSRI Gordon’s Bay volunteer sea rescue duty crew launched their sea rescue craft JACK RILEY and NSRI Hermanus volunteer sea rescue duty crew responded in their NSRI rescue vehicle towing their sea rescue craft HUNTERS GOLD RESCUER to be launched on-scene.
The Metro EMS Skymed helicopter, the SA Police Services, The local Community Police Forum members and the Overberg Metro EMS were activated.
Local Pringle Bay resident Roger Parsons, watching the drama unfolding from his balcony and using a telescope to keep tabs on the casualty craft, kept the responding resources up to speed on the location of the casualty craft.
The Metro EMS Skymed helicopter arrived on-scene first and quickly located the rubber-duck, 1 nautical mile off-shore, and Metro EMS rescue swimmer Michael Cloete was deployed into the surf, from the helicopter, and he secured both of the men who were then hoisted, one by one, in relays, into the helicopter (by the helicopters hoisting winch).
Once both men, and the rescue swimmer, were safely inside the helicopter they were brought ashore (in the helicopter) where the two men were reunited with family members who had been waiting anxiously on the shore.
Both men were treated for mild hypothermia but they required no further medical attention.
The two men, Julian Petersen, 40, and Patrick Adams, 45, from Grassy Park, showed extreme relief while being rescued and both men and their families have expressed their sincere gratitude to their rescuers.
The men’s red 5 meter rubber-duck remains adrift at sea and navigational warnings are being posted by Maritime Radio Services warning vessels in the area to keep a lookout for the navigational hazard.
NSRI appeal to anyone coming across the boat to report its whereabouts to sea rescue authorities. The boat is expected to eventually run aground along the False Bay coast.
- NSRI appeal to anyone launching any kind of craft onto water to wear life-jackets while their boat is underway, carry safety equipment – Red Distress Flares; A Signalling Mirror or CD Disc; a Referee Whistle; a Hand-Held Radio or Cellphone kept in Water Tight Plastic Sleeves.
- Always let a responsible person know your departure time, your exact route and your return time and stick to your plans and let the responsible person know you are home safe.
- Stencil your name, contact details and alternative contact details on your craft.
- Have emergency contact numbers programmed in your phone:
- Find out your nearest sea rescue emergency phone number by calling (021) 4344011 during office hours or go to www.nsri.org.za
- The National Emergency Medical and Rescue telephone number is 10177.