DIANNE RECOVERY: Emergency services prepare to investigate
UPDATE THURSDAY 12.30PM: INVESTIGATIONS into the sinking of the MV Dianne are ongoing with multiple inspections yet to be conducted.
Bundaberg Police Inspector Pat Swindells updated media this afternoon and said the QPS Disaster Victim Identification Squad, Queensland Fire & Emergency Services and the Naval architect would be carrying out investigations.
The DVI squad will arrive at the Bundaberg Port Marina this afternoon.
More to come.
UPDATE THURSDAY 9.30AM: FIRE fighters are at the scene of the Dianne trawler as investigations into it's sinking begin.
NewsMail photographer Tahlia Stehbens is on the ground and said all emergency services officers were stationed at the Bundaberg Port Marina.
"There are two large fire trucks here as well as some smaller fire service utes," she said.
"Two ambulance vehicles are also on scene as well as police officers.
"A cleaning service has just started pumping out waste from the trawler."
Fire services will assess the vessel this morning to determine whether it is safe enough for police and scientists to begin investigations.
The area has been cordoned off to media and the public.
More to come.
UPDATE WEDNESDAY 3PM: THE MV Dianne has now been transferred to dry land.
Crews worked for most of today to correctly balance the fishing trawler on to a travelift so it could be moved from the oceanfront of the Bundaberg Port Marina.
It is now on land and in a secure location.
The Queensland Fire Service scientific team and urban rescue team will examine the safety of the vessel first thing tomorrow morning before investigations commence.
UPDATE WEDNESDAY 2PM: SPECIALIST teams, including a disaster victim identification team, are on standby as part of investigations surrounding the MV Dianne's tragic sinking in October last year.
The fishing trawler, which was re-floated this morning, was towed along the Burnett River to the Bundaberg Port Marina.
Bundaberg Police Inspector Pat Swindells spoke to media and said crews had initially struggled to move the vessel up from out of the water due to it's weight.
"We have to pump more water out of it now and by this afternoon it should be up on the hardstand and available for further investigations tomorrow morning," he said.
"There is liquid in the fuel tanks, we don't know what that liquid is, but crews have to pump it out, decant the liquids, to make it easier for them to move it back to the hardstand.
"The weather conditions haven't been favourable but they are doing the best they can."
Insp Swindells said once the vessel was on dry land, further precautionary actions would take place to determine how safe the vessel is.
"Tomorrow it is anticipated that the Queensland Fire Service scientific team and urban rescue team will make an examination of the vessel to make sure it is safe for anyone to go on board," he said.
"Once it has been rendered safe and the atmospheric conditions are safe a disaster victim identification team will be notified and the criminal investigation branch will attend..."
"The disaster victim identification team will make an examination of the entire vessel and, if there are any remains, they will be able to assist in the identification of those remains."
The bodies of 30-year-old Adam Hoffman and 45-year-old Ben Leahy were found by police divers after the sinking off the coast of Seventeen Seventy last year.
Eli Tonks, 39, Adam Bidner, 33, Zach Feeney, 28, and Chris Sammut, 34, are presumed not to have survived the tragedy.
Insp Swindells said police would be looking for anything, specifically electrical items, on board the Dianne that may be able to assist with the investigation.
"Our investigators will be looking for anything in the way of electronics that may be able to assist and provide some clues as to what exactly happened on the night," he said.
"We will also be searching for any personal belongings that can be returned back to the families."
Insp Swindells said the past few days had been an "arduous task for everyone involved".
"I would like to thank everyone for their co operation and assistance," he said.
UPDATE WEDNESDAY 11.45am: MV Dianne is now at the Bundaberg Port Marina where a small crowd watches on.
MV Dianne has been hooked up to a marine travelift and crews are trying to balance the trawler.
NewsMail reporter Ashley Clark who is at the port has been told the trawler needs to be perfectly balanced before it can be suspended.
UPDATE WEDNESDAY 10.30AM: A delicate operation is now underway at the Port of Bundaberg to raise fishing trawler MV Dianne to the surface.
Police officers are at the scene and the area has been cordoned off.
The crews began the painstaking journey on Friday towing the fishing vessel back under water.
POLICE say the bodies of the missing men from sunken fishing trawler MV Dianne could possibly still be on board.
The vessel was towed into the Port of Bundaberg overnight after sinking off the coast of Seventeen Seventy in October last year.
The bodies of 30-year-old Adam Hoffman and 45-year-old Ben Leahy were found by police divers.
Eli Tonks, 39, Adam Bidner, 33, Zach Feeney, 28, and Chris Sammut, 34, are presumed not to have survived.
On February 12, the Dianne was partially raised to enable salvage crews the opportunity to conduct preparations in order to further raise the sea cucumber trawler to the surface.
On Friday, crews began the slow journey to port - towing the fishing vessel back under water.
Over the course of the today, the Dianne will have water pumped out of her and will be prepared for a lift on to land.
Bundaberg Police Inspector Pat Swindells fronted media this morning and said investigations would continue until police could help give closure to family members of the lost crew members.
"There is a possibility the men may be on board," Insp Swindells said.
"The police divers did an amazing job in some very hostile conditions to initially get into the vessel (after it sank)," he said.
"Now it is very important that we get as much information that we can.
"It will give the families some closure and they can continue on with the grieving process."
Insp Swindells said the recovery process and efforts to get the trawler to Bundaberg had been a constant struggle and were repeatedly hampered by bad weather.
"The weather conditions and the way the vessel was sitting on the sea floor made recovery efforts very difficult," he said.
"Now that we have it here we can see the hull of the vessel is intact.
"It won't be until we pump the water out of it until we see what the condition of it is inside."
Investigations will now continue with water police, detectives, scientific staff and maritime safety officers to determine exactly how the vessel sank and what happened on October 16.
"Later on today they will attempt to pump the Dianne out and once it has been empty of water, police will continue the investigation," Insp Swindells said.
"We will get the fire service in to do some testing to make sure other services can safely go on board.
"Specialist police will come out from Brisbane and our detectives will continue to try and find out exactly what happened and how it sunk."
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk issued a statement, paying her respects to the loved ones of those lost.
"The family and friends of the six men lost from the Dianne remain in our thoughts and prayers," she said.
"I pay tribute to all those involved the initial search, and those who have worked in the recovery efforts that now allow for thorough investigations into this tragedy."