Drama as inflatable boat capsizes at the Mole

An inflatable boat with a crew of five capsized in the Mole in Swakopmund on Friday afternoon. All persons managed to swim to shore where they were attended to by various emergency rescue services. The inflatable boat “Nanna” capsized after a rogue wave submerged the boat as it was entering the Mole upon return from the fishing grounds near Vierkantklip.
“There was not much I could do. The wave washed over the back and killed the engine,” explained the relieved owner of the inflatable boat, John Smith, to namib times at the scene. Accompanied by four fishermen Smit went out the same morning to catch cob. “The catches weren’t too great,” he said. They were fishing west of the Vierkantklip.
The sea was especially rough as it was full moon only two days before. In Swakopmund the fog was heavy with very limited visibility. As Smith was entering the Mole at about 15:00 a rogue wave “appeared out of nowhere” and crashed over the boat’s aft. The engine failed immediately.
“I knew we would capsize soon. I informed the crew of the situation developing and provided each with a life jacket. I told them should the boat capsize they need to hold onto the boat and only leave the boat and swim ashore once they are in the shallow water”, said Smith.
When emergency and rescue services arrived on scene, the capsized boat had drifted close to the black rocks just north of the Mole. Once the boat was about ten meters from shore, the crew took their chances and made a dash for land. They were immediately attended to by the rescue services.
“The most important to me is all crew is safe and sound,” Smith said. The crew was transported to hospital where they were treated.
A large number of onlookers gathered at the scene, as the sea-drama was unfolding. Some of the fish caught by the crew washed out and was picked up by members of the public. Some of the onlookers also grabbed valuables that washed ashore.
Members of the Neighbourhood Watch had to step in and prevent people from stealing the equipment.

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