Crowd turns on rescuers at KZN beach
Johannesburg - A beach crowd south of Richard's Bay became so aggressive towards rescuers searching for a man feared missing while swimming that police ordered National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) volunteers off the sands.
NSRI spokesperson Craig Lambinon said the operation had been affected by waves at Mtunzini being so big that the NSRI could not launch its rescue craft.
"Police and Ezemvelo-KwaZulu-Natal Wildlife rangers were also on the scene, assisting the NSRI in the search when a crowd of people on the beach became aggressive towards the rescue teams," said Lambinon.
He said the NSRI volunteers withdrew for their own safety.
"A police dive unit were summoned to join police and Ezemvelo rangers searching for the as yet unidentified male," he said.
On the other side of the country, also on New Year's Day, at Gordon's Bay, Western Cape, the NSRI carried out a search for a 32-year-old Malawian man believed to have gone missing.
"Despite an extensive search no sign of the missing man has been found and police divers will continue with an ongoing search operation," said Lambinon.
Near East London, a 14-year-old boy was presumed drowned off Kidd's Beach.