Couple saved in dramatic rescue
A MAN and woman originally from Gladstone but currently living in Darwin had to be rescued by the RACQ Capricorn Helicopter when their boat broke apart after smashing into rocks north-east of Rockhampton.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority alerted the rescue helicopter at 4.45am on Saturday that a distress beacon had been activated in the Percy Isles, 100 nautical miles north-east of Rockhampton.
On arrival the rescue helicopter located a large amount of debris, including a rubber dinghy and lifejackets.
The man and woman were seen climbing a peak on the island. A rescue crewman was sent down to winch the couple up, where they were assessed by a paramedic on board for any signs of hypothermia or shock.
The couple had been in Gladstone, where their boat was moored, and were on the back end of an eight-day sailing trip when the boat lost steering control two days earlier.
The man was in the process of fabricating replacement fibreglass parts on board the vessel when the incident occurred.
At 3am on Saturday morning the boat began to drag anchor, giving the couple little choice but to abandon ship. The remains of the vessel were found floating around Middle Island.