The National Sea Rescue Institute’s (NSRI) Kommetjie duty crew sprang into action when a distressed woman was found at the dunes on Noordhoek Beach at 9.32am on Monday, February 15. She informed them that her boyfriend had entered the surf, but she had lost sight of him.
“Our coastwatcher scoured the ocean to try to spot the man in the water while also raising the alarm,” the NSRI said via a statement.
No sign of the man could be seen in the water. The duty crew responded to their sea rescue base and the sea rescue craft Spirit of the Vines was launched.
NSRI rescue swimmers, City of Cape Town Fire and Rescue Services and Cape Medical Response responded to the scene as quickly as possible. The EMS Skymed rescue helicopter was also launched.
“Our sea rescue craft arrived on the scene and located the man, aged 38, from Glencairn, who was floating in the water at the backline breakers and he was rescued onto our sea rescue craft. He was semi-conscious and hypothermic,” the NSRI said.
He was brought to the Kommetjie slipway where paramedics treated him for hypothermia and for non-fatal drowning symptoms.
A Netcare 911 helicopter arrived and the patient was airlifted to hospital in a serious but stable condition.
It appears that he had been caught in rip currents while swimming.