Po­lice of­fi­cers get awards for brav­ery

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - HOLLY ROBERT­SON robert­sonh@tpd.newsltd.com.au

TWO po­lice of­fi­cers who res­cued tourists from drown­ing at Moss­man Gorge have been awarded for their brav­ery.

Moss­man po­lice of­fi­cer-in-charge Sergeant Ed Lukin and Se­nior Con­sta­ble Matt Smith plucked a man from swirling wa­ters at Moss­man Gorge on April 16, 2009.

Six months later the pair helped form a hu­man chain to pull a floun­der­ing Mel­bourne cou­ple from the pop­u­lar swim­ming hole.

“I couldn’t leave Ed out there in his jocks, that’s my ex­cuse for en­ter­ing the wa­ter,” Sen Con­sta­ble Smith joked.

“You can’t leave the Sergeant stranded in his undies.”

Sgt Lukin was recog­nised with the Com­mis­sioner’s Com­men­da­tion for Brav­ery and Sen Con­sta­ble Matt Smith re­ceived the Com­mis­sioner’s Cer­tifi­cate of No­table Ac­tion for the ini­tial res­cue.

“We’re nom­i­nated for the first one we did but the sec­ond one was prob­a­bly a lot hairier than the first one be­cause the wa­ter was a lot faster and in more a pre­car­i­ous spot,” Sen Con­sta­ble Smith said.

“The adrenalin takes over and your train­ing kicks in. It’s not un­til af­ter­wards that you think, ’Geez, that was a bit hairy’.”

Act­ing Deputy Com­mis­sioner Col McCal­lum on Tues­day pre­sented the awards at a Queens­land Po­lice Ser­vice cer­e­mony in Cairns.

Sen Con­sta­ble Smith said it was an hon­our to be recog­nised for div­ing into the wa­ters of Moss­man Gorge.

“Po­lice work by na­ture is a tough job and you’re heav­ily scru­ti­nised by the me­dia, the pub­lic and the po­lice ser­vice so to get pos­i­tive recog­ni­tion for a job is nice,” he said.

“Those are the sort of jobs why peo­ple choose polic­ing as a pro­fes­sion.

“You want to go home and be able to think that you saved some­one or made a dif­fer­ence. That’s why I took on the job, so I get a chance to help peo­ple.”

Au­thor­i­ties said the sec­ond res­cue, in Fe­bru­ary this year, could have been fa­tal.

All three tourists who were saved by the po­lice of­fi­cers es­caped un­harmed.

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