Latest entries

19 Jan 2012

Ryan Gosling spotted @ Massimo’s in Hout Bay working the bar

19 Jan 2012

Ryan Gosling contemplates the #OccupyChapmansPeak march in Hout Bay

18 Jan 2012

Chapmans Peak Drive near Hout Bay remains free for some!

Chapmans Peak Drive near Hout Bay remains free for some!

Taken from

No toll fee for ambulances in crisis

Private ambulances transporting emergency patients will not have to pay toll fees on Chapman’s Peak, says transport MEC Robin Carlisle, who stepped into the fray over the tolling of emergency vehicles on Tuesday.

This follows an article in the Cape Times in which Alan Walter, director of the Cape Medical Response Team, said paramedics had to scramble for money at the toll gate inb December while transporting an emergency patient from Hout Bay to Constantiaberg.

Carlisle said the gazetted regulations stated that all designated emergency vehicles were exempt from Chappies toll fees.

Designated vehicles included those of SAPS, SA National Defence Force, Provincial Health Department and City of Cape Town.

Before reading Carlisle’s statement, Walter said: “It was a pity that it had taken a ‘bit of a storm’ before the policy was changed.

“I am happy if we can change that because it will make the job of saving people’s lives easier,” he said.

Carlisle told the Cape Times that private ambulances and National Sea Rescue Institute vehicles involved in “genuine” emergencies would be exempt from the toll fee.

“I was unaware that private ambulances operated on that road and had to pay fees.

“I am glad it has been brought to my attention and they will now pass through because we can’t have them waiting at the toll gate to pay.”

Walters had previously written to Rob Pomario, a director of Entilini Concession, and was told ambulances should carry a float at all times to avoid any delays in finding money for toll fees. – Cape Times

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17 Jan 2012

NSRI Station 8 are the angels of Hout Bay

NSRI Station 8 are the angels of Hout Bay

Taken from

Solo yachtsman rescued off Hout Bay:

At 18h55 on Monday 16th January Hout Bay duty crew were called out following a request for assistance from the San Diego, USA, solo yachtsman Bob Loana, aboard his yacht AKUIDO with a split mainsail.

His yachts engine was not coping in the sea conditions and the yacht was being blown sideways, struggling in a wild sea with gale force South Easterly winds gusting to more than 65 knots. He was 2.5 nautical miles South East of Vulcan Rock and at serious risk of running onto it.

Our Hout Bay volunteers launched MTU NADINE GORDIMER and ALBIE MATTHEWS and on arrival we found the yacht being blown across the bay like a leaf in the wind bucking and pitching and having covered over 1.5 nautical miles in the 20 minutes it took our sea rescue craft to reach him.

A tow-line was rigged to the yacht from our sea rescue craft but on three occasions the tow-line snapped and the V-shaped bridle on the sea rescue craft broke twice. A 12mm thick stainless steel safety snap hook bent and snapped and had to be discarded. With slow progress, making only 1 knot, and having to re-attach the tow-line on numerous occasions, it was seriously considered to order the yachtsman to abandon ship after the yacht came close to running aground. The yacht was finely brought into the safety of Hout Bay harbour at 22h00.

Bob Loana, who lives on his yacht, was returning to Hout Bay after “having such a good time there in 2003″, he said.

Docking first in Durban and then last port of call Mossel Bay he was close to his destination when his mainsail tore in the gale force winds causing the rescue operation to be launched.

Bob commended the NSRI Hout Bay volunteer sea rescue crew saying that it was the best teamwork and rescue operation he had witnessed in some of the most trying conditions he had ever found himself in.

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17 Jan 2012

Should an ambulance on an emergency pay the toll on Chapmans Peak, Hout Bay?

Should an ambulance on an emergency pay the toll on Chapmans Peak, Hout Bay?

Taken from

The medical director of Cape Medical Response has been told his ambulances must stop and pay the toll fee if they use Chapman’s Peak drive, irrespective of whether it is an emergency, the Cape Times newspaper reported on Tuesday.

Alan Walters told the newspaper he was “absolutely gobsmacked” when he learnt the ambulances were not exempt.

“It’s just amazing, really nonsense,” he said.

“I’m not talking about going to a meeting in a response car, I’m talking about an ambulance with lights flashing with a critically ill patient in the back.

“It happened when the guys were on call and they got a call to go to Hout Bay to transfer a patient to Constantiaberg as an emergency.

“They were stopped at the toll and had to scramble around collecting money to pay the toll,” Walters said.

The incident happened last month.

Walters wrote to Rob Pomario, a director of Entilini Concession, asking that ambulances be granted exemption from toll fees when attending to a medical emergency “so that valuable seconds can be saved”.

“All our response vehicles are immediately identifiable as such, with signage and emergency lights,” he wrote.

Pomario wrote back to say he could not grant the ambulances exemption from the toll fees.

He suggested that the ambulances “carry a float at all times to avoid any delays in finding toll fees”.

“Alternatively, we suggest that you discuss our frequent user facility with our operator.

“The gazette is very clear as to which vehicles are to be regarded as emergency vehicles,” Pomario wrote.

Walters wrote to Western Cape Premier Helen Zille to say his ambulance service was not granted toll-fee exemption when responding to emergency calls.

“And that means life and death calls. Your opinion would be appreciated.”

Walters said the premier’s office wrote back to say the office would be closed until mid-January. He had not heard anything since then.

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