A baptism in the surf at Rocky Bay near Scottburgh has ended tragically, with the body of a woman being pulled from behind the breakers at about 7.15am today (Friday, 14 September).
National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) Rocky Bay station commander Kevin Fourie said they were activated following reports of a drowning in progress at Sezela. He was on the water at the time and responded in his private boat ‘Miracle’ while the NSRI duty crew and police search and rescue responded.
NSRI crew and police search and rescue unit divers manned the sea rescue craft ‘Freemasons Way’ as they searched the surfline and conducted shore patrols.
Reports indicated a man and woman went missing, reportedly swept out to sea after being caught in rip currents during a baptism in the surf.
The NSRI searchers found the body of an adult woman in the surf behind the breaker line, about a kilometre from where they had washed out to sea. They retrieved the body onto the sea rescue craft and took it to shore.
The body was taken into the care of the forensic pathology services, and police have opened an inquest docket.
An ongoing search operation for a missing adult man is continuing.
NSRI extends its condolences to the families. To report a sea rescue emergency, dial 112 from a cellphone.