Grounded vessel sparks stormy overnight rescue - The Community Leader and Real Estate New and Views


Storms were brewing late one night when the Coast Guard emergency phone rang. A 10-metre cruiser with engine troubles had run aground on Moreton Island south of Tangalooma and was in danger of being battered apart.

Skipper Allan Tennent called in a boat crew, and shortly after midnight Brisbane Coast Guard’s large command vessel CG29 left harbour. After a lumpy crossing to Tangalooma, the crew quickly located the troubled boat but were now faced with the challenge of safely recovering the boat and its occupants in the middle of blustery storm cells.

“We deployed our tender to drag a tow rope across, but with breaking seas and a strong current, it took some time to get the line in place and secured,” Allan explained. “The cruiser only had small deck cleats to secure the line to, so we had to use gentle towing pressure and rocking from the swells to ease it free.”

Once the vessel was under tow, there were still challenges for the crew. Thirty-knot rain squalls buffeted both vessels, causing a tow line to snap. A new line held for the rest of the six-hour tow back to Manly. With day breaking, the tired crew were able to deliver the disabled vessel and its relieved passengers to safe ground.

“The owner had recently purchased the boat, and was sailing on a shake-out trip even though the forecasts were poor,” Allan added. “While we’re always available to help people in trouble, if the weather conditions are marginal we urge people to reconsider their trips.”

After a fierce battle to connect a tow rope, a moment to relax for crew Kerri Edwards. Photo: Ian Williams,
Brisbane Coast Guard.

You may be interested in