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Surfer declared dead after washing up on Cape St Francis rocks

A surfer did not survive after he washed up on the rocks at Seal Point, Cape St Francis, in the Eastern Cape, on Christmas Day.


Image via Adobe Stock

An experienced surfer died at Seal Point, Cape St Francis, on Wednesday 25 December 2019. 

Cape St Francis is a village situated on a headland in the Eastern Cape province. It is popular for its clean beaches and as a surfing location. 

According to TimesLive, National Sea Rescue Institute’s (NSRI) commander at St Francis Bay, Sara Jane Smith, said their duty crew were alerted to a surfer in difficulty at 16.20 on Wednesday.

“A local man, a regular surfer in the area, had washed onto rocks after appearing to be in difficulty in the surf from unknown causes,” she said.

Experienced surfer washes up on rocks 

After the surfer washed up on the rocks, a group of local young surfers rescued the man and had managed to take him to the shore.

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) was attempted with the help of a private doctor, who was also on the beach. The NSRI duty doctor and its medics, as well as lifeguards and paramedics, also offered aid.

“Sadly, despite extensive CPR efforts to resuscitate the man were exhausted, he was declared deceased,” said Smith.

Gale force winds, rough seas warning issued for Cape coastline 

In other news, the South African Weather Service and NSRI issued a warning for beachgoers to exercise extreme caution on the Cape coast on Boxing Day Thursday 26 December 2019. 

Effective between 6:00 and 22:00, the SA Weather Service said: “Gale force westerly to southwesterly winds (65km to 70km/h) are expected along the coast between Hermanus and Mossel Bay today.”

The SA Weather Service has also issued a warning for wind and waves on Thursday of up to 15 nautical miles for coastal areas between Cape Columbine and Plettenberg Bay.

The NSRI said a spring tide was resulting in high tides being higher than normal and low tides being lower than normal. 

“This is a crucial period especially on the Day of Goodwill as people will be visiting coastal regions and engaging in marine activities,”


“NSRI is appealing to bathers, paddlers and boaters to heed the SA Weather Service alert and be cautious particularly in light of the peak of the New Moon spring tide, peaking on 26 December, that will affect the coastline.”


It said this would gradually begin to dissipate between the Day of Goodwill and New Year’s Day, returning to normal tides by New Year’s Day.