Darren Zimmerman, NSRI Simonstown station
commander, said: “At 08h15 (Sunday, 25th
August) NSRI Simonstown volunteer sea
rescue duty crew were activated following
reports of a spear fisherman sustained a spear
through his right femur (upper leg) at Boytjies
Drift, near Buffels Bay, Cape Point.
“The man, 38 year old Willie van Wyk, from
Hout Bay, and a friend were wading across
rocks preparing to get into the water to go
spear fishing early this morning when a wave
washed over them causing them to be
dragged over rocks by the force of the water.
In the process it appears that the spear from
his spear gun went through the mans leg.
“There were fears that the spear may have
penetrated or severed his femoral artery and
an urgent medical rescue response was
“Our NSRI Simonstown volunteer sea rescue
duty crew responded in our sea rescue vehicle
and CMR (Cape Medical Response)
ambulance, the WC Government Health EMS
and the Red Cross AMS Skymed helicopter
“On arrival on-scene the man was found with
the spear straight through his right femur and
still embedded in the leg with the spear
protruding out of both sides of his leg.
Indications showed that the spear had missed
his femoral artery.
“Paramedics stabilized the man before bolt
cutters were then used to shorten the spear
that was embedded right through the leg (He
would not have been able to be loaded into
either an ambulance or into the helicopter if
the spear was not shortened on each side).
“It is not clear if the spear gun was loaded
and actually fired through his leg but based on
the injury and the force that would have been
required to go through the upper leg it is most
likely that the spear gun was loaded and then
fired while the two men were being rolled
about over the rocks after being hit by the
“The man was airlifted by Skymed to hospital
in a stable condition where doctors will
surgically remove the spear from his leg. He is
expected to make a full recovery.”