Safety recommendations from fisho drowning
NORTHERN Coroner Kevin Priestly has handed down five safety recommendations regarding the death of a Cairns fisherman man, who drowned while working off Townsville in 2013.
Glenn Anthony Wilson, 39, was found floating face down in the water near his overturned fishing dory. Mr Wilson had been working in the fishing industry for over 10 years and was considered to be a skilled dory operator.
At the time of his death, Mr Wilson had been working aboard the vessel Norlaus.
On July 17, 2013, Norlaus had left Bowen harbour with five fishing dories in tow. About 1am on July 26 the vessel arrived at Bowden Reef, off of Townsville. Between 7.30 and 8.30am four dories left, Mr Wilson was in one. He was sighted throughout the day.
About 5.30pm Mr Wilson upside down dory was spotted by another fisherman.
Mr Wilson was found floating face down in his orange wet weather gear and motionless with fishing line tangled around his lower right leg. He was not wearing a life jacket.
Based on evidence at the inquest, Mr Priestly determined he had been attempting to retrieve the anchor, which was stuck in the reef. As he used the outboard and a shortened anchor line to try to dislodge the anchor, the dory capsized and Mr Wilson fell into the sea, his legs becoming tangled in his fishing line.
Mr Priestly’s recommendations were that the Australian Marine Safety Authority review the need to mandate the wearing of life jackets, develop safe working procedures through the application of risk management, continue to develop and implement the new restricted Class C fishing vessel standard to cover fishing operations, require vessels meet certain standards and establish an effective safety management system.