East Cape Coastal Water Rescue

09:23 (GMT+2) Wed, 04 Sep 2019


For over 30 years, Coastal Water Rescue has existed in different forms, but with the same mission: to provide a rapid response team for water-related emergencies and rescues in and around Nelson Mandela Bay.

About us : 

Coastal Water Rescue was established in 1982 and was originally called Surf Rescue. Surf Rescue was founded by members of the Summerstrand Lifesaving Club. Due to the Metropole’s lack of funding and poor capabilities of their water rescue squads, the Summerstrand Lifesaving Club’s members saw the need for a rapid response emergency and rescue team.

In 2006, Surf Rescue took on a complete rebrand and Coastal Water Rescue was born. The name change came about when they wanted their name to reflect the areas that they respond to, rather than just surf. Since then, through sponsorships, funding and the increase in volunteers, they have grown and formed many more relationships with other emergency services in and around Port Elizabeth.

Coastal Water Rescue responds to any water-related incidents and emergencies such as drownings in the sea, rivers, lakes, dams and swimming pools; boat flips; flooding; and occasionally land searches if needed by the police or other emergency organisations.

Members are on stand-by 24/7, 365 days a year and at any given time, there are at least 8-10 members who will be able to respond and assist in an emergency.

Coastal Water Rescue is a member of the Emergency Services Coordinating Committee and a member of the sub-committee (WERC). All water-related incidents are electronically distributed to all the WERC members, and the Coastal Water Rescue squad is alerted via SMS alerts. Sometimes the squad is not activated but rather placed on standby when notice of a possible emergency is received.

The Coastal Water Rescue volunteers vary in age and profession and consist of business owners, professionals, reps and students throughout Nelson Mandela Bay.

Coastal Water Rescue is not a stand-alone unit that functions in isolation but is rather a unit that supports and assists all other emergency services in Nelson Mandela Bay.

As a Non-profit Organisation, Coastal Water Rescue is always willing to take on more volunteers. We have volunteers living all over Nelson Mandela Bay, which gives us the advantage of being able to respond to rescues very quickly along the Bay’s coastline.

If you’re interested in volunteering with us, take a look at the following:

Who can volunteer with Coastal Water Rescue?

We accept any volunteer, provided that you have a specific skill to bring to the team. Volunteers do not only consist of swimmers, medics, boat crew, SAPS Reservists and qualified first-aid members; but we also take on volunteers who can help out with our admin, communication and even our PR.

80% of the squad consists of our core function – which are rescue swimmers. All potential rescue swimmers will need to pass a compulsory fitness test, and all new members will be on 3-month probation during their first 3 months at Coastal Water Rescue. It would also be recommended to be in possession of an LSA (Lifesaving Award) if you’re looking at becoming a rescue swimmer.

What are the requirements for becoming a volunteer?

There are a few requirements we need from our volunteers to ensure that our team remains as reliable and strong as we are.

Applicants must:

  • Be over 18 years old.
  • Be strong swimmers (if applying to do rescues).
  • Be passionate about saving lives and responding to emergencies.
  • Be reliable.
  • Have dedication.
  • Be able to take part in teamwork – this is important for all members in all positions at Coastal Water Rescue.

If you believe you possess these qualities and you meet the requirements of volunteering with us, send your CV to ops@cwrescue.co.za and someone will get back to you. 

f you would like to get hold of us to find out more about what we do or more about volunteering with us, please use the following contact details:

Dirk Erasmus: 082-570-328 / ops@cwrescue.co.za

Suzie du Plessis: 084-209-2533 / pro@cwrescue.co.za

Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/coastalwaterrescue/