-Edited by Bev Mortimer-
NSRI Cape Town and boats brought 26 people to safety on shore after a fire broke on a 35m Hout Bay support vessel south of Cape Point.
Simon McDonnell, NSRI Simon’s Town station commander, said Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) and Telkom Maritime Radio Services co-ordinated response to the vessel that was on fire. All shipping traffic in the area were alerted by an all-ships alert on marine VHF radio to divert to assist if possible.
The Transnet National Ports Authority, Telkom Maritime Radio Services, NSRI Simon’s Town duty controllers, NSRI Hout Bay duty controllers and the NSRI’s EOC were also alerted and assisted MRCC in the coordination of the rescue operation.
The cargo vessel, Aquaexplorer, and the fishing vessel, Umfondini, diverted to assist, plus NSRI Hout Bay dispatched two NSRI rescue craft, Nadine Gordimer and Albie Matthews and NSRI Simon’s Town dispatched its NSRI rescue vessel, Donna Nicholas.
The 26 people uninjured evacuee were rescued and transferred to Umfondini. They were brought to Buffels Bay shelter and transferred onto the Donna Nicholas and brought to NSRI Simon’s Town base. They were then transported by road to their home base in Hout Bay.
NSRI commended the swift response of all involved.
A vessel has reported sighting the life raft adrift at sea South of Cape point and at this stage no efforts are currently underway to recover the life raft. MRCC and Telkom maritime radio services also confirmed reports of the hull located adrift on the Atlantic Seaboard side of Cape Point and drifting in a North-Westerly direction.
See Video of the rescue of the people :