Police search and rescue teams assisted by the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) were searching the waters off Richards Bay for the employee who is presumed drowned after the boat he was in capsized.
Police search and rescue teams assisted by the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) were searching the waters off Richards Bay for the employee who is presumed drowned after the boat he was in capsized.
Picture by National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) Richards Bay
Picture by National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) Richards Bay
MEC Sihle Zikalala in Richards Bay.
MEC Sihle Zikalala in Richards Bay.

Durban -The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) has launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the capsizing of a KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board boat in Richards Bay on Wednesday. 

On Friday morning, the search will continue to try and find one of the missing KZN sharks board employees. Two others died in the tragic incident. 

The tragic incident reportedly occurred shortly after 06h00 in the port of Richards Bay. Five employees of the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board were involved.

The skipper of the boat – described as a shark-meshing vessel named “Typus III” – is reported to have been one of those to have lost his life. He reportedly had more than 18 years of experience as a skipper.

According to a SAMSA report, the boat capsized after being hit by strong waves while the boat crew was inspecting and replacing shark nets along the Alkant Strand beach in Richards Bay.

SAMSA Principal Officer for the agency’s Richards Bay office, Captain Winston Lobo, said the National Sea Rescue Institute was activated and two people were rescued. They are in a stable condition in hospital. Tragically, two others died and one is still missing.

Captain Lobo said the rescue operation of the boat crew and search for the missing employee – conducted jointly between SAMSA’s Maritime Rescue Coordinating Centre (MRCC) and the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) port control in Richards Bay as well as NSRI and SAPS divers – continues. 

He said SAMSA officials – together with the South African Police Services (SAPS) – had been working to establish the circumstances of the tragic incident.

Daily News