Ricochet News

Search continues for German tourist swept away by rip currents in St Francis Bay

Mar 31, 2017
Search continues for German tourist swept away by rip currents in St Francis Bay

Search and rescue operations are continuing on Friday in St Francis Bay where a visiting 58-year-old German woman went missing in the surf after being caught in a rip current on Thursday afternoon.

According to Sarah Smith, National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) St Francis Bay station commander; "At 13h30, on Thursday, the NSRI St Francis Bay duty crew were activated following reports of a drowning in progress at a beach known as Ducks Beach, near to the Cape St Francis Resort."

Smith says NSRI rescue swimmers were dispatched to the scene and the sea rescue craft, Spirit of St Francis II, was launched.

"On arrival on the scene, we joined staff of the Cape St Francis Resort, bystanders and surfers searching in the water for a 58-year-old German tourist missing in the surf after being swept out to sea by strong rip currents," she described.

"It appears that a group of tourists from a tour group had gone into the surf where some were wading in shallow water but one man had gone in deeper where, according to eye-witnesses, he had been swept out to sea by strong rip currents before disappearing under water.

"Reportedly the tourists that had been wading in shallow water had all been able to get out of the surf."

Smith added that despite an extensive sea and shoreline search, including rescue swimmers deployed into the surf to free dive search, "in extremely strong rip currents, no sign of the man has been found and Police have been called to open an investigation and to continue an ongoing search operation".