Boat lost after wrong turn made
AN EARLY morning boating accident off Evans Head yesterday led to a dramatic sea rescue which left one of the rescuers in hospital.
A four-metre aluminium runabout, the Nikkiana, got into trouble and capsized at Chinamans Beach at the southern end of Evans Head yesterday morning.
It is understood the boat, carrying two men, crossed the bar at Evans Head before sunrise on a fishing outing.
The boat’s skipper was using a global position satellite device to find his location on the water, but became confused and motored off in the wrong direction toward the beach.
When the skipper realised he was almost on the beach he turned back and successfully made his way through two breaking waves. However, a third wave crashed into the boat, swamping it. It then capsized. Fishermen on a commercial fishing boat, the Julia, were nearby when they saw the overturned boat, and went to assist.
Australian Volunteer Coast Guard radio operator Christian Booker said a deckhand on the Julia became entangled in rope while in the water during the rescue.
The deckhand, who was trying to secure a tow rope to the runabout, began to suffer chest pains.
He was taken to hospital.