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East Cape Coastal Water Rescue Logo

East Cape Coastal Water Rescue

Coastal Water Rescue is an independent, registered Non-profit Organisation consisting of volunteers who form part of the coastal emergency team in and around the Bay.

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.

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