Bystanders create harness in vain bid to save man swept off rocks in Cape Town

2017-01-15 12:23
Ali Gaffoor in the water tied to a make-shift harness that he and bystander Peter Ascham had used to try to rescue an unidentified man in the water on the Promenade in Three Anchor Bay. (NSRI)

Ali Gaffoor in the water tied to a make-shift harness that he and bystander Peter Ascham had used to try to rescue an unidentified man in the water on the Promenade in Three Anchor Bay. (NSRI)

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Cape Town - A resident walking his dog and a cyclist desperately tried to save a man who was swept off the rocks at the Three Anchor Bay promenade on Sunday by creating a makeshift harness to haul him to safety.

But the man was later declared dead.

The man was found on the rocks in the water below the Three Anchor Bay promenade wall, National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) Table Bay duty controller Paula Leech said in a statement.  

NSRI Table Bay dispatched swimmers and medics to the promenade at 05:46 on Sunday.

The SA Police Services, Community medics and Western Cape government health Emergency Medical Sercices were also activated, Leech said.  

"On our arrival on the scene we found a bystander Peter Ascham at a harness that was tied to the promenade railings and attached to a bystander Ali Gaffoor.

"[Gaffoor] was in the water below the promenade wall after trying to rescue an unidentified man who had been swept off the rocks."

Leech said Ascham, who had been walking his dog on the promenade, noticed the unidentified man in the water on rocks below the promenade wall shouting for help.

Ascham summoned the assistance of a passing cyclist, Gaffoor, and they raised the alarm while they tethered a harness together.

Leech said Gaffoor went over the wall to try to assist the man who had then been swept off the rocks and was being swept out to sea and out of reach. 

"NSRI rescue swimmer Graeme Watson swam out to the unidentified man who had been swept approximately 100 meters out to sea and rescued the man bringing him to the promenade wall where NSRI rescue swimmer Mark de Vos, assisted by [Gafoor], who had remained below the wall, and using a harness the unidentified man was lifted up to the promenade, where NSRI medics initiated CPR."

The man was declared dead after efforts to resuscitate him were exhausted, Leech said.

An inquest docket had been opened.


The forensics services were on the scene. (Nick Pawson, News24)

Read more on:    nsri  |  cape town  |  drownings

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