Crowd turns on rescuers at KZN beach

2012-01-01 22:00

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.

  • Deepchund - 2012-01-01 22:50

    Nothing unusual about the idiots behaving the way they did. It happens on Durban's "golden mile" but is kept as a low profile issue, else, holiday makers will not return to Durban. Where was the crowd control promised by the law enforcement authorities. ZERO TOLERANCE - what a load of hogwash.

      John - 2012-01-02 06:32

      Never underestimate the destructive power of stupid people congregating in large numbers!

      clivegoss - 2012-01-02 06:44

      Zero tolerance is working just fine around Cape Town "Thou shall NOT have BOOZE on the beach.Lovely local authority income stream from the fines. Lekker day for all on the beaches and you try to give the local law enforcement lip or try to bribe them. See you and your "friends in court", BUT it requires the WILL TO WANT TOO.

      Lodewyk - 2012-01-02 09:42

      "BUT it requires the WILL TO WANT TOO"... I think that is literally the main problem, the WILL TO WANT is non existant..

      Heinrich - 2012-01-02 17:30

      Lodewyk : In every literary genius there is a little eccentricity.

  • Eric Schollar - 2012-01-01 23:51

    Must be the same crowd that destroys Rhodes Park most weekends!

  • simondgie - 2012-01-02 00:17

    Who wrote this article, a child? You have forgotten the point of journalistic writing, namely: Who? What? Where? Why? And how? Ok, so we know they turned aggressive, but why? I am assuming because there were issues launching the rescue craft, but the article is very unclear. The standard of writing has gone downhill very quickly, I have noticed. The same can be said for all newspapers and news sites in SA, not just News 24. Come on, editors.

      Chum Scrubber - 2012-01-02 05:55

      Agree, the article is basically informationless. It leads us all to have speculate on the reasons - I mean what sane people become aggressive towards people trying to help them? Seems the only reason can be stupidity.

      Rob - 2012-01-02 09:58

      That is what you get from a 'Collective' mentality.....never, never suggest individual responsibility. If you do someone may be held accountable, and you surely don't expect that to happen in SA do you?

      Steve - 2012-01-02 10:05

      I fully agree ....

      John - 2012-01-02 12:39

      @simondgie, absolutely pi$$ poor reporting, they just leave you hanging in the air. It's like that story about the KZN guy with the R1m Rhino shoot. By not giving the full facts as to why the authorities issued the permit, News24 started a $hit storm. Of course every animal lover will be up in arms.

      Wendy - 2012-01-02 15:52

      well the lack of information is, I'm sure for good reason ..

  • Marc - 2012-01-02 00:22

    A special kind of stupid, found in a certain part of the globe......

      Mike - 2012-01-02 12:55

      Yes, the part not covered by water

  • Lloyd De Raay - 2012-01-02 00:54

    I agree with you simondgie. The article is not very well written at all. One is unable to draw any conclusions as a result. Come on news24 get with the program!

  • Grant - 2012-01-02 02:29

    Nothing in the report to suggest what were the perceived reasons for the unrest.

      Call_Of_Muti_3 - 2012-01-02 02:35

      well, they tend to burn down trains, when copper theft causes train delays, so by using racial and intellectual profiling, they obviously thought the NSRI volunteers are trying to get rid of a comrade, by purposefully delaying the rescue effort.

  • Ian - 2012-01-02 04:00

    what do you expect from woodwork failure savages, fat kid mentality

      Pixie86 - 2012-01-02 07:02

      if you have nothing to say then keep quiet!

      Lodewyk - 2012-01-02 09:43


      Garth - 2012-01-02 10:41

      If you are naming Mtunzini a hovel Ian, then you have never been there and seen the showpiece, indigenous nursery that the town became. And with `Twin Streams' linked to it, just beautiful. Ian and Jean Garland did wonders there. If only all SA towns would get rid of their exotic plants and replace them with indigenous. KILL THE JACARANDAS! Richards Bay is a modern eye-sore compared to quaint Mtunzini.

      Mike - 2012-01-03 13:54

      Hey Ian Is this your year for being a troll, 'cos you've maxed out today already ! ;-)

      Mike - 2012-01-03 13:57

      Ian Do you have specific knowledge that the crowd was acting under the instruction of failed woodwork students ?

  • Black.Wolf.SA - 2012-01-02 05:43

    Disgusting!!!!!!! Dont deserve the help!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Xenswim1 - 2012-01-02 17:18

      To appreciste the true and read beteen the line take the time to visit these beaches over the festive period. Up intil a few years ago I used to bodyboard at North beach. The manner in which the crowd deliberately provoke the Lifeguards is dicgusting. Further more it seemed whenever the Rubber duck was used in crowed control some would deliberately put their lives in danger just to get a ride on the boat. It starts with one or two next thing they were "rescueing" ten a trip. That is how dumb out Sea vistors are.

  • jaap.kotze - 2012-01-02 06:28

    ''......when treated as an social equal they will devour you...''

  • RemoteMedic - 2012-01-02 06:53

    Yup, TIA! This is a prime example of the attitude towards rescue personnel in South Africa. Kudos to the NSRI team not putting themselves at risk to create a probable bigger disaster. Safety of yourself and your fellow rescuers are paramount!

  • Schalk - 2012-01-02 07:19

    Leave the bastards to drown.

      Mike - 2012-01-02 13:00

      Who are these bastards? Peoples' husbands and fathers? Why should 48 people (so far) like this comment? You and they, Schalk, are sad and heartless people.

  • malcolm - 2012-01-02 08:00

    Standard practices for certain cultures. The same cultural behaviour that leads to children getting lost over the festive period, and only being retrieved a week or two later by the parents. Madness.

  • Garth - 2012-01-02 08:05

    Come on news24! Exasperation! Why did they become aggressive? Why? Do your bloody jobs properly! If you do not know the reason then state that `for reasons unknown at this point' or something of that vein.

      Peter - 2012-01-02 08:44

      Hear, hear! Rubbish reporting.

      SeeVeeDeeEl - 2012-01-02 08:49

      Maybe it won't be PC for the very PC N24 to tell the whole story.

      Daniel Bierman - 2012-01-02 18:40

      the crowds got agresive as the rescuers didnt launch their vessel as sea conditions exceeded that of the vessels capability more info is on their website

      Daniel Bierman - 2012-01-02 18:40

      the crowds got agresive as the rescuers didnt launch their vessel as sea conditions exceeded that of the vessels capability more info is on their website

  • SeeVeeDeeEl - 2012-01-02 08:20

    Non swimmers.

  • chris.kleynhans - 2012-01-02 08:58

    Liquor should be kept of our beaches and it must be policed. There is no policing and our beaches are a mess on Public Holidays and people are constantly in danger of being attacked or robbed.

  • Cathy - 2012-01-02 09:48

    So it was actually Mrunzini not Richards Bay! I loved in Richards Bay and can quite believe that there was chaos and total mayhem at all Northern KZN beaches. people are bussed in and taxis block the roads so that local residents are unable to leave their homes. Alcohol is not allowed ont eh beaches so people hide it in the dense bushes along the beach and still manage to get drunk and disorderly. Every year lives are lost or almost lost, but it seems no lessons are learnt!

      Cathy - 2012-01-02 09:49

      Lived! ;)

      Rip - 2012-01-02 09:56

      No lessons learnt? Its simple. Most of these people can't or don't read so they don't know about the lives lost.

  • poaul - 2012-01-02 10:14

    I live in Mtunzini and the beach is one of the most quiet in the country, except for taxi's and buses bringing people in on Christman, Easter and New Years day. Then the beaches are a no-go area for all sane people. To all those calling this a hovel, google Mtunzini before you comment...

      poaul - 2012-01-02 10:15

      Err.. "Christmas"

  • Shirley - 2012-01-02 10:33

    Dken sots! The rescue services put their lives on the line daily for drunken ungrateful morons! Let them do their own rescue-see how far they get!

  • greg.groenewald - 2012-01-02 10:35

    Something similar happened in the mid 90's here in Pietermaritzburg, my partner ( in business ) was a volunteer fire fighter and went out during the floods in Dec to help with handing out blankets to the informal settlements who were in need, ....they had to leave them as they were gettnig pelted with rocks etc from the very people that they had gone out to help...go figure, I know as I was on the cell with him at the time.

      Riaan - 2012-01-02 14:16

      Thanks for clearing the issue of your partner up. We don't want people to get the wrong impression.

  • guy.goes1 - 2012-01-02 10:58

    Hurray lets beat up the rescuers they must learn not to interfere with the natural demise of our intoxicated buddies.

  • ruben.maistry - 2012-01-02 11:13

    Yes, insufficient information from the Editor to make a fair comment.

  • Jacques - 2012-01-02 11:29

    This is what i dont understand. Ellis park has a maximum capacity so does night clubs etc. Why do our beaches not have the same. Only so many people can be accomodated but we just allow thousands and thousands of people on the beach. In 2009 I went in to save a young drunk black man on Shakas rock who could not swim. All his mates was cheering and just looking. I found him on the bottom of the ocean floor and braught him up. I almost drowned my self with my three year old holding on to a stranger watching his daddy drown. We were both put on oxygen and taken to hospital but as we were treated this young mans mates went into the ocean teasing the life guards with the crowd cheering them on. Inevetably one of the mates drowned. It is unecceptable behaviour and i refuse to go to the beach on Christmas or New Years day. I cant stand and watch a person drown meaning i wont put myself in that situation again

  • Wendy - 2012-01-02 11:36

    The really scary thing is that those mindless morons who turn on emergency services are VOTERS.

      maureen.bryden - 2012-01-02 15:46

      And what's worse they are allowed to BREED! THAT they manage to achieve very competently and very frequently!

  • Spotty - 2012-01-02 12:02

    Withdraw the lifeguards permanently, and let the rectums drown. This country is already most of the way down the toilet, why prop it up artificially ?

      frederick.cunliffe - 2012-01-02 12:16

      And take out the sharknets

  • Warwick - 2012-01-02 12:02

    Agreed ! In Port Alfred, a little girl of 12 was rescued by local young surfers after the lifeguards did not notice her, but unfortunatly she died in hospital later - this while her family sat drinking liquor on the beach, not supervising their kids ! It is disgusting the way these holidaymakers drink so much alcohol and have scant regard for the safety of their children, who are just so excited to swim in the sea. This is not the lifeguards fault, the blame lies with the parents. I will not be surprised if more drownings are reported or kids are reported missing - the amount of illegally consumed liquor on beaches is disgusting. I actually feel no regrets to these families, only sadness for the kids whose lives are destroyed. Hope they all bugger off back inland so peace can be restored here. On the up side the local municipal clean up operation must be commended, they just need to work on saying NO to allowing booze and swimming on PA's most dangerous beach.

      Mya - 2012-01-02 17:41

      Hi Warwick, how's Kowie?? Nice to see you on these forums. x Mya

  • Keith - 2012-01-02 12:47

    well what does one expect? Our government and law enforcers break the law at will instead of setting an example and enforcing the law. People will just break the law...who cares, there is little recourse when they do it.

  • Trevor - 2012-01-02 12:48

    Pull the lifeguards out then and let them swim...will help to thin out the gene pool a bit.

  • Deon - 2012-01-02 13:40

    Sometimes people should be left alone to destroy themselves, with the only intervention when they want to destroy the innocent.

  • IrvinMan - 2012-01-02 13:47

    its always to sad to lose lives especia

      Ken - 2012-01-02 16:27

      Yes, many many NSRI people have lost their lives trying to help others.

  • gcshrimpton - 2012-01-02 14:12

    Durban looked like an oil slick. Take out the shark nets and let the great white sharks eat their fill . But then again even sharks have a certain standard! Comment by Tickey and Friends against the brainless, unwashed, uneducated malema clones.

  • PaasHaas - 2012-01-02 15:09

    Mob mindset triggering plenty of racial insults. Lets not forget that a week ago security officers were assaulted, gates blockaded, people arrested, etc., when numbers were limited at Sodwana Bay and the boys couldnt take their big toys onto the beach.

      Spotty - 2012-01-07 10:16

      Opposite end of the spectrum - same lousy mentality. Why is it that the wealthier one is, the worse the sense of entitlement ?

  • ludlowdj - 2012-01-02 16:00

    no story is better than half a story......what exactly were the NSRI doing to upset the people????

      Daniel Bierman - 2012-01-02 18:26

      they didnt launch their vessel due to the sea conditions exceeding that of the craft they had on scene

  • Leendert - 2012-01-02 16:09

    I think it is about time that 'crimes' against emergency personnel were put on a par with those against the police.

      Spotty - 2012-01-07 10:19

      No !!! Our so-called police are comprised of a large number of criminals, starting from the very top down (Cele, Selebe). The emergency services doesn't have this problem.

  • Ken - 2012-01-02 16:22

    I really think that the wonderful NSRI people who put their own lives on the line should withdraw their services from these yearly mass gatherings. They obviously are not appreciated. Remember they gave up their time on a public holiday (AT NO CHARGE) away from their partners, children only to be intimidated !!!

  • Ndaba - 2012-01-02 17:28

    this is what when a nation loses its moral compass, if the uninformatively reported incident happened. SA needs to reinforce the essence of morality and sanctity of life in its education. But for the mad political leadership, a lesson from the Zimbabwean education will help.

      Spotty - 2012-01-07 10:26

      One only has to look at the role models at the top to realize why things have gone downhill.

  • Cindy - 2012-01-02 20:00

    I Live in RHB the crowd was massive! RHB do not have the recourse to control a crowd of the magnitude.

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