Red flares not due to emergencies waste NSRI resources

(NSRI website)
(NSRI website)

Cape Town - Rescue teams spent four hours searching for the source of a red distress flare seen between Kommetjie and Hout Bay early on Tuesday, the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) said.

Members of the public noticed the flares and called the NSRI, which sent out a sea craft, NSRI CEO Dr Cleeve Robertson said in a statement.

Spotters were posted on Chapmans Peak. Once it was confirmed no one was in danger, the flares were declared a false alarm.

Since December 2016, authorities had responded to 15 distress flares that were not the result of an emergency.

Robertson said the amount of false alarms was concerning.

“The NSRI and the emergency services launch a full-scale response to every flare sighting because we have to be absolutely certain that no one is in difficulty at sea.”

He appealed to the public to not set off red distress flares unless they were in a sea-related emergency.

Businesses who wished to safely dispose of expired distress flares could contact the NSRI on 021-434- 4011 for help.


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