4 people rescued from burning boat
Burning boat overturns off Gladstone, 14 people rescued by authorities
Posted on 25.06.2019
Fourteen people, all from the same family, have been rescued after their boat caught fire and overturned off the coast of Gladstone this morning.
Thirteen people who were involved in the “marine accident” were rescued by Water Police and a 14th person, a 74-year-old man, was winched to safety by a rescue helicopter.
Two patients were transported to Gladstone Hospital — one with smoke inhalation and post-immersion symptoms, and the second with a chest injury, according to Queensland Ambulance.
Both patients are now in a stable condition and all other patients have been assessed by paramedics.
It is understood the boat was the MV Norval, which overturned and caught fire about 9.00am at Rock Cod Shoal, about 45 kilometres off Gladstone.
The 14 people on board initially evacuated onto a dory which then began taking on water.
- Thirteen people were rescued by Water Police, another was rescued by helicopter
- Inspector Darren Somerville said no-one was seriously injured in the accident
- All patients have been assessed and are in a stable condition
One of the men on board, Kevin Alexander said he initially hesitated when his son, the skipper, called for the group to “abandon ship”.
“I didn’t want to go as quick as he did, but lucky we went because when we did, it was up [in flames] and gone,” Mr Alexander said.
“Getting off the big boat onto the little boat was the hardest part of all, it’s so rough and the tender boat’s flying up and dropping, the waves were probably about two-and-a-half metres.
“[I thought,] just hang on, and look for that chopper in the sky.”
Gladstone Volunteer Marine Rescue chief controller, Michael McCaullay praised the men for quickly activating their EPIRB (Safety locator) and following marine safety procedures.
“We’ve managed to not lose a life at sea, which is fantastic,” he said.
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