With the end of the school holiday insight, a fun day on the beach turned tragic when a nine-year-old boy went missing at sea on Wednesday morning in Mosselbay while a man drowned in KwaZulu-Natal.
According to NSRI Mossel Bay station commander Andre Fraser, the boy went missing in the sea at Diaz Beach.
“The nine-year-old local child was reportedly witnessed disappearing below the water surface at around 09h30 at Diaz Beach.
“NSRI Mossel Bay sea rescue craft, By Grace ambulance services and Police, supported by a private helicopter, a private fixed-wing aircraft, and a Law Enforcement and Traffic Services drone, conducted an extensive sea, air, and shoreline search but there remains no sign of the missing nine-year-old local child.”
He said the Police Dive Unit would continue in an ongoing search operation.
Police have opened an investigation.
“Our thoughts are with the family of the missing child in this difficult time.”
Fraser said two other children were rescued from the sea at the same beach on Wednesday earlier.
“At 11h03, Wednesday, 6 October, NSRI Mossel Bay duty crew were activated following Police reports of a drowning in progress at Diaz Beach, Mossel Bay.
“The sea rescue craft St Blaize Rescuer and Rescue 15 Bravo were launched while NSRI rescue swimmers, By Grace ambulance services and the SA Police Services responded.”
Fraser said it was reported that two boys were in difficulty in the surf line.
“On arrival on the scene, we found one 11-year-old boy was safely out of the water and not injured while a local surfer had secured a 12-year-old local male in the water, assisting the child by using his surfboard for floatation.”
He said an NSRI rescue swimmer reached them in the surf line and rescued the child to the shore.
The surfer is commended for his intervention.
“The child was medically assessed by paramedics before being released to family members with the advice to monitor the child for non-fatal drowning symptoms.”
Meanwhile, a man drowned at the Umgeni River mouth in KwaZulu-Natal on Wednesday afternoon.
Emer-G-Med spokesperson Kyle van Reenen said paramedics and Metro Police Search and Rescue responded to the Umgeni River mouth in the vicinity of the Blue Lagoon area for reports of drowning at around 16:00.
“On arrival on the scene, lifeguards were found to be attending to a male believed to be approximately thirty-five years of age.
“After extensive assessment, the man was found to be obviously deceased, and there was nothing further paramedics could do to assist him. He was declared dead on arrival.”
Van Reenen said it is believed the man was attempting to cross the lagoon when he got into difficulties and drowned.
“However, the necessary investigations will be conducted.”