Fraser Island emergencies

A FISHERMAN from Goomboorian was rescued at sea after his vessel capsized in choppy conditions off Fraser Island yesterday.

He was located, by the AGL Rescue Helicopter crew, clinging to the upturned hull of his 4.4 metre half-cabin runabout 5km out at sea from Happy Valley.

The 41-year-old man was winched to safety and taken to Hervey Bay Airport where an ambulance was waiting to transfer him to hospital.

A 21-year-old Brisbane man also had to be airlifted from Fraser Island on Sunday after a 4WD crash on Orchid Beach.

Police were investigating the single-vehicle crash in which the man, one of two male occupants, was injured. He was airlifted to Bundaberg Hospital in a stable condition.

An AGL Action Rescue Helicopter spokeswoman said the Maroochydore-based crew tasked to rescue the man at sea yesterday found him clinging to the upturned hull of his runabout in cold, choppy conditions.

She said the 4.4 metre half-cabin runabout capsized in 1.5 metre seas and 20-25 knot winds about 8am.

A distress beacon had been activated in the Coral Sea.

"The helicopter tracked the beacon's homing device, locating the upturned vessel about 5 kilometres east of Happy Valley, Fraser Island," she said.

Last week the AGL Action Rescue Helicopter crew went through an intensive water-winch training day in practice for just this type of emergency.

Gympie Times


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