On Sunday, July 18, a teenage girl fell off the rocks and into the icy ocean waters at Bakoven beach as reported by News24.
Tyra-Lee Penney, a 16-year-old lifeguard from Claremont who was off-duty at the time, scoped the magnitude of the situation and quickly contacted the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI)’s emergency line for urgent help.
According to NSRI’s deputy station commander, David Rosenberg, the girl who had fallen was being swept through the rocks by “rough sea swells.”
Tyra was instructed to closely monitor the situation, fetch the NSRI pink rescue buoy and get it to the girl in the rough waters.
The girl’s boyfriend, Ethan Klerck, who is a 16-year-old Rondebosch lad ran to the scene to help.
23-year-old Wihan Koegelenberg from Paarl and 24-year-old Kyle Feldman from Durbanville were bystanders in the incident while sitting on the rocks when they realised the depth of the situation.
The NSRI crew, police and Camps Bay Security responded with Community Medics while ER24 ambulance services were placed on alert. However, the efforts of Cape Town’s young heroes were essentially what rescued the teen!
In telling the happenings of the young heroes, Rosenberg expressed that:
“They both [Wihan and Kyle] ran to the area where they saw a female struggling in the rough seas in between rocks, and her boyfriend was attempting to assist her, but he was being hampered by the slippery rocks and rough seas,” Rosenberg said.
“Wihan and Kyle both entered the water, and they were able to reach the girl and began to swim her towards the rocks.”
Klerck threw the NSRI pink rescue buoy to them and between them all, the young heroes managed to get the girl out of the water to safety as the NSRI Bakoven crew arrived.
The girl and her boyfriend were then treated for hypothermia, bruises, and lacerations according to News24. Their families were contacted to come and fetch them upon their discharge.
Wihan and Kyle had some scrapes cuts and bruises which they acquired amidst the rescue mission.
NSRI commended the brave response and combined efforts of the group who banded together to save the girl.