ISLAND EMERGENCY: A luxury Riviera cruiser has been run aground on Fraser Island after taking water overnight.
ISLAND EMERGENCY: A luxury Riviera cruiser has been run aground on Fraser Island after taking water overnight. Contributed

Pleasure craft aground on Fraser Island after sinking drama

DESPERATION fueled a dramatic response when the crew of a large pleasure craft ran the vessel aground after it started taking on water and sinking off Fraser Island, salvage experts say.

The Rainbow Beach firm, Rainbow Recovery, Repairs and Services, described the situation on Sunday afternoon, after learning the craft had come ashore overnight in front of Orchid Beach, a resort and residential area towards the island's north.

The vessel is thought to have been damaged, but how badly is not known.

All crew made it to shore safely.

A luxury Riviera cruiser has been run aground on Fraser Island after taking water overnight.
A luxury Riviera cruiser has been run aground on Fraser Island after taking water overnight. Contributed

"This lovely 43-foot Riviera has come ashore overnight out the front of Orchid Beach.”

But rough seas are thought to have made the manoeuver much more dangerous.

"They had anchored up for safe harbour,” the company spokesman said.

A luxury Riviera cruiser has been run aground on Fraser Island after taking water overnight.
A luxury Riviera cruiser has been run aground on Fraser Island after taking water overnight. Contributed

The boat was thought to have been filling up from waves coming in over the stern.

"They got the motors going and just headed in to the beach before they sank,” he said.

"Unfortunately, it looks like it will be a clean-up, not a salvage,” he said.

A luxury Riviera cruiser has been run aground on Fraser Island after taking water overnight.
A luxury Riviera cruiser has been run aground on Fraser Island after taking water overnight. Contributed

It has now been reported that a man in his 60s has been airlifted to Hervey Bay Hospital from the stricken vessel.

Five people were on board when the vessel began to take on water, it has been reported.

The group had tried to pump the water out, but decided to deliberately run the craft aground when they realised it had taken on too much water.

An RACQ LifeFlight helicopter rescue service representative said all five on board had managed to get to shore safely before the chopper arrived.

The helicopter landed nearby and a Queensland Ambulance Service paramedic on board processed the group.

Most had minor injuries that did not require further treatment, but one man suffered a rib injury after falling onto a guard rail as the boat ran ashore.

A man from New South Wales was flown to hospital for fruther treatment and was reported to be in a stable condition.

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