Port Shepstone

The Umzimkhulu River Mouth near Port Shepstone, KwaZulu-Natal. Photo: Supplied/NSRI

Port Shepstone: Fisherman drowns after being swept off dolosse

A fisherman has fatally drowned after falling off a dolos at the he Umzimkhulu River Mouth near Port Shepstone.

Port Shepstone

The Umzimkhulu River Mouth near Port Shepstone, KwaZulu-Natal. Photo: Supplied/NSRI

A 25-year-old fisherman has fatally drowned at the Umzimkhulu River Mouth near Port Shepstone on the KwaZulu-Natal south coast.

The man is believed to have slipped off a dolos while fishing in the ocean on Thursday 5 March 2020. The dolosse are large concrete blocks designed to protect the coastline against the erosive force of waves. Fisherman will often stand on the dolosse but are at great risk of being knocked off by waves and swept into the ocean.

Sea Rescue respond to reported drowning in KZN

Witnesses reported an active drowning to the South African Police Service (SAPS) and volunteers from the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI)

The NSRI responded to the incident launching the sea rescue craft Spirit of Shelly at the scene to assist the Med-Evac  rescue craft, Gods Grace, in the search.

“At 14:45 on Thursday 5 March, NSRI Shelly Beach duty crew were activated to assist Police K-9 Search and Rescue, Police Search and Rescue, KZN Government Health EMS, SA Police Services and medevac ambulance services at Umzimkhulu River Mouth, Port Shepstone, activated to a reported drowning in progress,” said NSRI Shelly Beach’s station commander.

“The sea rescue craft Spirit of Shelly was towed to the scene and launched to join the Med-Evac rescue craft, Gods Grace, that was on the water and searching for a missing man, with paramedics and Police Search and Rescue officers onboard, and shoreline search efforts were also being conducted.”

Rescue efforts in vain as man drowns near Port Shepstone

The efforts to find and rescue the drowning man sadly proved in vain as rescuers recovered his body from the surf. All efforts to resuscitate the fisherman failed and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Government Health Forensic Pathology Services will conduct a post-mortem to ensure that there was no foul play involved in the suspected accident.

The fisherman has not been identified as SAPS in Port Shepstone attempt to notify the deceased’s family.

“During a search the body of a local 25-year-old man, who had been fishing from the dollosse before reportedly falling from the dolosse into the surf, was located and recovered onto the Med-Evac rescue craft and brought to shore where sadly he was declared deceased by paramedics,” the NSRI’s statement continued.

“The body of the man was taken into the care of Government Health Forensic Pathology Services.

“Police have opened an inquest docket.

“Condolences are conveyed to family and friends of the deceased man.”