EL NSRI heroes host Open Day

VITAL SERVICE: The National Sea Rescue Institute Station 7 hosts an informative Open Day on October 1 at the East London port. Pictures: TAMMY FRAY

The National Sea Rescue Institute station 7 held an Open Day on October 1, along with other stations across the country, to promote awareness about the essential role it plays in ensuring water safety across the metro.

Station Commander Catherine Prentise said the Open Day provided an opportunity to show local donors and sponsors the good use to which their financial support was put.

Without donors, the NSRI would not have the funding needed to operate.

Local residents were given the opportunity to meet new trainees and ask questions about water safety, rescue operations, and boating.

Towards mid-October, the East London NSRI will begin in-take for training new recruits.

Prentise said there was a big need for volunteers willing to work as shore controllers.

“Recruits can either be part of the boat crew or the shore crew, so knowing how to swim is not a prerequisite for applicants because we have a need for people who are able to work in the control room.

“Rescue operations are dependent on the shore controller staff so people should not be deterred if they cannot swim.”

Information on the application process will be shared on the East London NSRI’s Facebook page, and other social media platforms and all are welcome to apply.

The syllabus is stringent and covers a range of aspects such as boat safety, attending an emergency scene, and compiling statistics.

Trainee crew member Benji Gane said anyone interested in NSRI training had to be dedicated.

“You learn so much about boats and nautical terminology and the procedures needed for rescue operations.

“I have been here for almost a year and I am still learning so people should know that when they see an NSRI boat there are years of training and experience that has gone into the volunteers on that boat.”

As the festive season approaches, Prentise urged people to take heed of spring tides and to refrain from drinking alcohol at beaches.


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