Divers swim to shore after boat failure

2016-04-28 06:00

NSRI Shelly Beach received a report from fishermen about two scuba divers swimming towards shore on Thursday.

They looked out of place not accompanied by a dive boat, about half a mile off-shore of Orange Rocks, and fishermen raised the alarm.

NSRI Shelly Beach responded and on arrival the divers - Brent Vinnicombe (39) from Cape Town, and Michael Whitcombe (26) from Margate - were already ashore and safe.

They were assessed by Hibiscus Medivac paramedics, but were found uninjured and required no further assistance.

They reported they had surfaced from a dive at Deep Salmon Reef (about a nautical mile off-shore of Shelly Beach) to find their support boat about 100 metres away from them after they had dived and surfaced only a few minutes later.

“Their motor boat had experienced trouble and the divers realised they could swim towards the shoreline,” said NSRI spokesperson, Craig Lambinon.

It took about 90 minutes to get to shore and they timed the sets to get out of the water onto rocks where fishermen were on hand to help them.

NSRI alerted Shelly Beach boat tower control and they called the support boat by radio and the skipper reported that the boat had suffered one motor failure, battery power failure, and she was having difficulty starting the second motor.

The skipper also reported she had subsequently lost sight of the divers’ buoy.

- Supplied.

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