On Saturday 20th November, Darren Zimmerman, the station commander of National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) Simonstown, reported the NSRI EOC (Emergency Operations Centre) received a SafeTrx emergency alert from a surf skier off-shore of Simonstown indicating an emergency from a local surf skier.
NSRI EOC made a phone call to the surf skier who confirmed that he needed urgent assistance. NSRI coast watchers were alerted and they immediately got “eyes on” the surf skier in distress.
The sea rescue craft ‘Donna Nicholas’ was diverted from another call out and was directed to the position reported on the SafeTrx emergency alert.
The sea rescue craft Donna Nicholas arrived at the surfski incident finding a local 15 year old male had abandoned his surfski after falling out of his surfski near Roman Rock Lighthouse. He was hanging on to the back of a fellow surf skiers craft. A NSRI rescue swimmer was deployed into the water and the teenager was rescued onto the sea rescue craft and brought to Simonstown harbour. There he was treated by Cape Medical Response paramedics for hypothermia before being released into the care of his parents.
Brett Ayres, NSRI’s Executive Director of Rescue Services commented: “This is another successful rescue because of the use of the SafeTrx app. It is an essential part of the safety layers which every surf skier or water user should have when on the water, especially in extreme conditions. The difference between life and death in our cold waters is often the much reduced time saved by not having to search for a casualty, because SafeTrx takes the search out of Search and Rescue”.