Sick fisherman evacuated from boat near St Francis

Sea rescuers had to evacuate an ill crew member from a fishing boat about 3.5 nautical miles off the coast of St Francis Bay on Friday morning‚ the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) said.

It said the man was in a stable condition in a local hospital.

“At 09.30am on Friday‚ the NSRI St Francis Bay duty crew were activated following a request for medical assistance from the Chokka fishing boat Maluti‚ reporting a 35-year-old local crewman suffering lower abdominal pain‚” NSRI station commander for St Francis Bay, Sara Smith, said.

“The Sea Rescue craft Spirit of St Francis II‚ having been in Cape Town for a substantial re-fit over the past few months‚ and having successfully completed the re-fit and sea trials‚ had left Cape Town the night before on a trailer‚ and she was due to be relaunched in St Francis Bay on Friday 07th October.

“Although we had activated our auxiliary stand-by sea rescue craft‚ a private boat‚ we decided to phone the driver of the trailer to see how far they had progressed. The driver reported to be entering St Francis Bay at the same time and they arrived at our sea rescue base a few minutes later‚” Smith said.

She said the NSRI St Francis Bay duty crew were already kitted up and standing by at the slip-way ready to launch on the patient evacuation call-out.

“The sea rescue craft Spirit of St Francis II was given a brief and thorough inspection by our crew and she was launched from the slip way straight into duty and we rendezvoused with the casualty craft 3.5 nautical miles from the Port of St Francis‚ 2.5 nautical miles off-shore of the Krom River.

“The patient‚ in a stable condition‚ was transferred onto our sea rescue craft Spirit of St Francis II and he was brought to the Port of St Francis and he has been transported to hospital in a stable condition by Private Care ambulance‚” Smith said.

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