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Four rescued from sinking yacht near King Island overnight

Thursday 4 February 2016
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has coordinated the rescue of four people on board a sinking yacht near King Island off the coast of Tasmania overnight.
Media Release

AMSA Search and Rescue received a call for assistance at 1.51am (AEDT) via VHF radio from those on board the yacht reporting a steering failure.

Soon after the yacht reported it was taking on water and a distress beacon associated with the yacht was detected at 2.08am (AEDT).

Those on board the yacht reported it was likely they would have to abandon the vessel to a four person life raft if the vessel continued to take on water.

AMSA tasked its Melbourne based search and rescue aircraft, which arrived overhead the yacht about 4.30 am.

Two Victoria based helicopters were also tasked, with the first helicopter arriving at 5.10am.

Tasmania Police at Currie advised AMSA Search and Rescue there was a local fishing vessel in the vicinity of the stricken yacht.

The fishing vessel was tasked by AMSA and diverted to the yacht, which had remained afloat about 7.5 kilometres south east of Grassy Harbour.

The survivors from the yacht were transferred to the fishing vessel, while AMSA’s search and rescue aircraft remained overhead.

The survivors were taken to Grassy Harbour at King Island following the rescue, with no reported injuries.

The yacht was last seen submerged and a safety message warning other vessels of the abandoned yacht has been issued.

AMSA reminds people to carry a properly registered EPIRB or distress beacon while on the water.

In this situation it was vital in providing a GPS location that assisted in the successful rescue of four people.

AMSA thanks all of those involved in the rescue, including the fishing vessel, and the crews of the aircraft and helicopters.