NSRI rescues unconscious sailor off Cape Town coast

Photo: NSRI

NSRI evacuated the sailor from a fishing trawler after he collapsed and required urgent medical assistance.

The National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) has evacuated a sailor from a fishing trawler after he collapsed and required urgent medical assistance.

A call was made in the early hours of Friday morning, according to NSRI Table Bay station commander Marc de Vos, from the fishing trawler, around 35 nautical miles off-shore of Hout Bay.

An EMS duty doctor medically evaluated the sailor during radio communications.

“The doctor deemed it necessary to have the ill fisherman, who was suspected to be in a serious condition, [evacuated] from the trawler to the nearest appropriate hospital as soon as possible,” De Vos said.

The NSRI Table Bay duty crew, a paramedic and emergency services rescue technician responded and the Transnet National Ports Authority was alerted.

Air rescue teams were placed on alert and the fishing trawler was instructed to head towards Green Point.

“The sea rescue craft Spirit of Vodacom rendezvoused with the fishing trawler in dense fog deep sea off-shore of Llandudno…. An NSRI rescue swimmer and the EMS rescue paramedic were transferred onto the trawler and the patient was medically stabilised and transferred onto the sea rescue craft,” said De Vos.

The sailor was transported to hospital in a stable condition by EMS ambulance and he is expected to fully recover.

In another incident on Thursday, the NSRI Port Elizabeth duty crew was activated after receiving a request for assistance to evacuate an adult male Filipino crewman from a bunkering tanker at anchorage off-shore of Port Elizabeth.

Justin Erasmus, NSRI Port Elizabeth station commander, said: “The crewman required transportation to a dentist as soon as possible and considering the Covid-19 lockdown, the Port Health Authorities advised the tasking of NSRI to carry out the operation, taking into consideration that NSRI [is] well prepared for all Covid-19 Department of Health protocols, regulations and precautions.”

The crew rendezvoused with the bunkering tanker three nautical miles off-shore of the port of Port Elizabeth in calm seas, and the crewman was transported to a dentist.

He was returned to the ship that afternoon.

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