DAFF officials in drowning incident
25 Oct 2012
This morning, Thursday, 25 October at around 11h00, during their normal patrols of the coastal areas, two fisheries patrol officers of the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) who are stationed in Hermanus, noticed suspicious activities near Breakfast Bay.
The officials who were patrolling the area on jet-skis, moved closer and found three men busy diving for abalone.
When the men noticed them, the three abandoned the bags they had and one swam to the shore while the other two swam into deeper waters (around 80-meters from the shore) where the one experienced trouble. His friend then attempted to help him but gave up and decided to also swim to safety in the rough sea conditions.
Our officials then took the unconscious man out of the water and loaded him onto the NSRI sea rescue craft. When on shore, the paramedics tried CPR but the man was later declared dead.
It then transpired that none of them had any diving permits and the surviving two were then taken by the police.
Our officers did not go back into the water to recover the bags.
DAFF regrets the loss of life in this instance and call on our fishing communities to join hands with us and other law enforcement agencies to prevent the irresponsible poaching of our valuable and depleting marine resources and in the process, also prevent these unnecessary and preventable accidents - it is the second time in less than two months where a person drowned in that area during illegal fishing activities.
For more information:
Cell: 076 267 5838
Issued by: Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries
25 Oct 2012
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