Simone and David Andersen. Mrs Andersen is in Brisbane with her husband.
Simone and David Andersen. Mrs Andersen is in Brisbane with her husband. Contributed

Boatie named a hero after saving man burnt by explosion

THE quick actions of a boat operator to rescue an injured man after an explosion on his boat have been praised by emergency services.

A Whitsunday father remains in a critical condition in the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital after being seriously burnt in a fire on a boat near Shute Harbour.

David Andersen, 40, received burns to 80-90% of his body in the blaze on Tuesday morning.

IN THE NEWS PREVIOUSLY: Owner burnt, boat sinks after it caught fire at Whitsundays

Mr Andersen's wife, Simone, and two sons have flown to Brisbane to be by his side.

Whitsunday Water Police officer-in-charge Sergeant Graeme Pettigrew said Mr Andersen was "terrifically burned" and there was nothing else for the rescue boat to do but get him to shore.

"All boat operators on the water have an obligation to another boat in distress but obviously (the rescuer has) done a great job of getting to him and getting him out of the water and to first aid," Sgt Pettigrew said.

Boat fire out from Shute Harbour.
Boat fire out from Shute Harbour. Contributed

Airlie Beach Fire Station officer Kevin Tomas said firefighters arrived at Shute Harbour marina to find crew from a charter boat giving first aid.

Mr Tomas praised their efforts. "I don't know the name of the tourist boat that was there, but they did a remarkable job administering first aid to the casualty," he said.

Police believe the vessel was travelling to Long Island from Shute Harbour at the time of the fire.

A Maritime Safety Queensland spokesman said the matter was with the police and he expected they would handle investigations.



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