Seven people rescued from upturned boat off Bundaberg


At 5pm (AEST) yesterday (Saturday 13 January) the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) received a distress signal from a registered emergency beacon, with a position showing between Lady Elliot Island and Bundaberg, off the Queensland coast. 

Contact was established with associates of the beacon owner, who advised that a vessel was due to be returning from a surfing trip to Lady Elliot Island, with 7 people. 

The AMSA Response Centre tasked two rescue helicopters, from Rockhampton and Bundaberg, to investigate the distress location. The Bundaberg LifeFlight rescue helicopter located 7 people on the upturned hull of a small recreational vessel, about 65 km north-east of Bundaberg. With fading light, the helicopter deployed a life raft to assist the stranded people. 

The Volunteer Marine Rescue unit from Bundaberg retrieved 7 people from the life raft, arriving on the scene at about 7:30pm (AEST).  

All were safely taken on board the rescue vessel and returned to Bundaberg at about 10.30pm last night. 

They were carrying and activated their properly registered emergency beacon and were all believed to have been wearing lifejackets. These actions significantly enhanced their survival prospects and aided with their rapid and successful rescue. 


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