NSRI urges boaters, sailors, paddlers to download safety app
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Cape Town - Although spring has arrived, the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) appealed to the public to be cautious and use the NSRI RSA SafeTrx free cellphone application when they are on or near bodies of water, because winter sea conditions of rough seas, strong winds and stormy conditions still prevailed.
This was after they responded to a number of calls around the Western Cape over the past few days.
In Yzerfontein, NSRI duty commander Junre Marais said they had recently responded to and intercepted a number of incidents, including a boat whose crew appeared to be struggling to recover their boat that was threatening to capsize, a fishing vessel requesting medical assistance, and a commercial fishing boat reported to be taking water and sinking with 10 crew on board.
In Wilderness, NSRI deputy station commander Mike Vonk said they responded to eye-witness reports of a man with a kite-board in distress on Island Lake.
In Simon’s Town, NSRI station commander Darren Zimmerman said they responded to an incident where a local fisherman had anchored his craft north of Miller’s Point after he experienced engine failure.
“A towline was established, and we towed the craft to Miller’s, where we assisted him to recover his craft, and no further assistance was required,” said Zimmerman.
NSRI spokesperson Craig Lambinon urged all boaters, sailors, paddlers and anyone launching any kind of craft to go to sea to download and use the NSRI RSA SafeTrx app and have easily accessible safety gear on board their craft.
Hout Bay Yacht Club general manager Craig Dunlop said their members often used the NSRI’s safety app.
“We have wonderful sailing through winter between the cold fronts. We often say that winter in Cape town is the secret sailing season,” said Dunlop.
Royal Cape Yacht Club spokesperson Kerry Pryde said they sail all year around, but definitely not during howling winds.
“A lot of our members do use RSA SafeTrx. We also use the flotilla option when racing in one long-distance races,” said Pryde.