Cape Town-based shipbuilder Nautic Africa has donated two Maritime Incident Response Trailers (MIRT) to the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI).
Speaking at the handover ceremony at the Nautic Africa factory in Table Bay Harbour on Friday morning, CEO James Fisher noted that the company not only liked to work with volunteer organisations in the maritime domain such as the NSRI, but that the project was exciting because Nautic Africa liked building things.
Fisher said that the NSRI volunteers do “an amazing job for us in this country and often it is very unsung, so we need them, it is very important.”
The project is an initiative by Johnathan Bakker, a young engineer who recently started working at Nautic Africa. An NSRI volunteer with Station 26 at Kommetjie, Bakker was tasked in his final year of studies to perform community work for an NGO and build a scale model of an item that would solve a problem the NGO was experiencing.
But Bakker did not let the things lie after graduating. When he joined Nautic Africa, he approached Fisher to sponsor the building of the trailers.
“We are honoured to be able to support the NSRI,” Fisher explained, “For us, as opposed to just giving a cheque over, the opportunity to be involved in some small way, building something, was exciting for us. We really liked that aspect of it.”
Each rapid response off-road trailer will be used for rapid response calls, allowing the NSRI to set up a communication centre at the scene of an emergency. The trailers come fitted with their own power unit, radio communications and lighting. The trailer also incorporates a power point to recharge electronic equipment.
This multi-role capability, Fisher remarked, was very much like their own vessels, multirole in application, but which may have specific dedicated uses.
The two trailers were handed over to Mark Hughes of the NSRI and have been allocated to NSRI Station 26 (Kommetjie) and Station 31 (Still Bay).
Nautic Africa is a builder of speciality high-speed, ballistic protected aluminium patrol vessels, mainly to the military, Coast Guard and oil and gas communities.