Bathers Saved off Ann Avenue but one man missing
The NSRI St Francis Bay duty crew were activated shortly after midday yesterday afternoon following reports of multiple people in difficulty in the surf off Anne Avenue Beach.
The sea rescue craft Spirit of St Francis II was launched and NSRI rescue swimmers raced to the beach to join four Kouga Municipal lifeguards, three of the volunteer lifeguards and two local surfers who were in the surf attempting to rescue nine bathers who had been swept out to sea by rip currents.
The NSRI rescue swimmers swam out to the lifeguards who confirmed that they had eight of bathers in a group and along with one of the surfers were assisting casualties to the the beach. The NSRI rescue swimmers then swam to a surfer who was helping one casualty and the surfer was able to get that casualty to the shore.
Once all nine bathers were safely brought to the beach where the were checked by paramedics from Private Care ambulance services and required no further medical care.
It was then confirmed that one person remained unaccounted for, a local 28 year old man, and the NSRI sea rescue craft, a Private fixed wing aircraft, a Police helicopter and a K-9 Search and Rescue team and a Police Dive Unit joined in the ongoing search operation but despite an extensive search no sign of the missing man has been found.
Police will continue an ongoing search and recovery operation and Police have opened an investigation.
NSRI commend the lifeguards and the two surfers who rescued the bather from the water and NSRI thank the private plane that assisted in the ongoing search for the missing man.
NOTE: Bathers should be cautious when swimming off Ann Avenue as it is not patrolled by lifeguards