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St Francis Bay - A 50-year-old man died after a small boat carrying a family of six and a small dog capsized in the St Francis Bay harbour mouth in the Eastern Cape on Sunday morning, the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) said.

NSRI St Francis Bay duty crew were alerted at 7:48am, NSRI spokesperson Craig Lambinon said.

The sea rescue craft Spirit of St Francis II and NSRI rescuers and an NSRI duty doctor arrived on the scene where the small boat, the Blue Dolphin, registered in Mossel Bay, was found washed up on rocks, and the private boat, the Juwana, had rescued the 50-year-old grandfather, his son, granddaughter, grandson, and a Yorkie dog.

"His wife and her daughter had made it to rocks where members of the public assisted them and brought them to the harbour," he said.

NSRI medics and the NSRI duty doctor performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) on the 50-year-old man, believed to be a local, and on arrival on the scene private care ambulance services paramedics and Eastern Cape government health EMS paramedics continued CPR, "but despite extensive CPR efforts the man was sadly declared deceased after all efforts to resuscitate him were exhausted".

Police had opened an inquest docket. The remaining family members were treated for shock and for cuts and bruises and were recovering. 

"It appears that the small boat may have stopped in the harbour entrance where despite the calm seas a wave may have capsized the boat," Lambinon said.

African News Agency/ANA