Five fishermen shipwrecked on reef
FIVE fishermen have been shipwrecked in a storm, 104 nautical miles east of Mackay.
Volunteer Marine Rescue Mackay president Russel McLennan said the professional trout boat had been blown onto Cockatoo Reef.
Mr McLennan said the professional fishers' boat had been caught in a gust during a severe storm when winds were blowing at more than 50 knots.
"They've been blown onto the reef," he said.
The boat put out its first distress call at noon and by 3.30pm the vessel had almost sunk into the water, Mr McLennan said.
"It was on its side and it will go under at full tide."
The five fishermen were uninjured and safe in a dinghy anchored on the reef, he said.
Help was on the way, with the crew of the fishing boat Vision answering their mayday call.
Mr McLennan said the shipwrecked fishers would be safely aboard by 7pm today.
They will remain on board overnight, and will be picked up by VMR tomorrow morning.