The Courier-Mail

Survivor clings to dead dad

- EMMA WILLIAMS

A MAN was found clinging to the body of his dead father after their fishing boat capsized off Cape Moreton yesterday.

A Queensland Air Rescue spokesman said they found a 24-year-old Beachmere man using an emergency beacon to float while holding his 56year-old father’s body to stop it slipping under the waves.

A 30-year-old Yarraman man found clinging to a jerry can was also saved. He was rescued about 16km northeast of Cape Moreton.

The men are believed to have been in the water for up to two hours.

It is believed a wave knocked out the boat’s engine before a second wave capsized the vessel.

The men on board tried and failed to get life jackets and other flotation devices out of the sinking boat but fortunatel­y managed to find a float- ing emergency beacon. An Australian Maritime Safety Authority spokeswoma­n said an unregister­ed beacon was detected around 7am and a satellite provided the position of the upturned 5.6m boat.

With three trawlers in the area, emergency services thought it might be a false alarm until rescue crewman David Turnbull spotted a pair of boots floating in the water.

The men had gone out on an overnight fishing trip on Saturday but ran into trouble while trying to reposition their boat on Sunday morning.

“As they started it, a freak wave, they say, hit the front of the boat and swamped the motor,” Mr Turnbull said. “Straight after that another one broke and tipped the boat over, put the gentlemen in the water.”

The two survivors are being treated for hypothermi­a at the Princess Alexandra Hospital.

Police will prepare a report for the coroner.

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