The brother of missing man Justin Anderson is comforted at Wivenhoe Dam. He returned to the scene on Wednesday.
The brother of missing man Justin Anderson is comforted at Wivenhoe Dam. He returned to the scene on Wednesday. Rob Williams

Search stepped up for missing man

POLICE will today double the number of search boats in the hope of finding the body of Redbank Plains man Justin Anderson.

Three full days of searching have so far failed to track down the 27-year-old, who is missing and feared drowned in Wivenhoe Dam.

Mr Anderson and close friend Daniel Mann, also 27, were fishing in the dam on Monday when their narrow, three-metre canoe capsized.

Ipswich District Inspector Merv Adamson said 10 police and SEQWater boats would be used when the search resumed at 7am today.

“We're still using the sonar equipment. It's working well but it's a slow process, where you have to concentrate on a reasonable pin-point area,” Inspector Adamson said. “It picks up all sorts of objects under water.”

Yesterday's search involved five watercraft, a helicopter and teams of people scouring the eastern shoreline for signs of Mr Anderson.

Mr Mann accompanied police on the search as they tried to retrace the fishermen's steps leading up to the tragedy.

Police believe that if he drowned, his body may float to the surface in the next day or so.

Inspector Adamson said the possibility that Mr Anderson somehow made it to the edge of the dam had been ruled out.

He said a wave – caused by gusty winds – was responsible for tipping the boat, which was also heavily loaded down with 40kg of extra batteries used to power an electric motor.

Mr Mann was able to swim to the eastern shore of the lake and eventually walked to safety.

He later told police his friend went missing after going under water to try and remove the steel-capped boots he was wearing at the time.

Police said the boat did not have life jackets or safety gear on board.



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