South Africa 8.1.2018 04:23 pm

Drownings still a big concern, says City of Cape Town

File picture: NSRI

File picture: NSRI

The number of drowning incidents over this festive season has been heartbreaking, particularly when the circumstances in many cases suggest they could have been prevented.

A 63-year-old Cape Town resident drowned at Kalk Bay harbour over the weekend, bringing the number of fatal drowning incidents to 14 along the city’s coastline since December 1, the City of Cape Town said on Monday.

The man from Mitchell’s Plain was declared dead on the scene after apparently jumping from a jetty on Sunday just before before 8am. After being pulled out of the water by a worker in the area, paramedics performed Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) but the man was declared dead on the scene despite attempts to resuscitate him.

The City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security JP Smith said: “The number of drowning incidents over this festive season has been heartbreaking, particularly when the circumstances in many cases suggest they could have been prevented. Swimming outside of designated areas remains one of the main contributing factors, with 11 of the 14 drownings occurring as a result of failing to adhere to these safety guidelines.”

Smith said apart from educating people and making them aware about safety rules, he was not sure what else could be done to prevent these incidents from occurring. However, Smith said the City and the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) have been patrolling in an attempt to direct people towards safer swimming areas.

“In terms of alcohol confiscations from the beaches and other public spaces, the City has booked in 11,210 bottles at its Ndabeni pound since 1 December, totalling 7,935 litres,” Smith said.

He added that the City’s regulations make it possible for the public to collect the confiscated alcohol from the pound within three months but that this will require the payment of a release fee of R1,400.

“Any alcohol not collected within this period will be disposed of in the coming months,” said Smith.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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