A 71-year old man has crashed his sailboat into a Whitsundays island
as a result of a medical episode, prompting a dramatic marine rescue this morning. [ Video ]
The man lost consciousness during the episode, causing his vessel to run aground on Hook Island.
The boat was discovered by a passing boat, whose skipper prompted the mayday signal.
What followed was a four-hour rescue mission, as local police deployed their rescue vessels to locate the sailboat.
Paramedics were on board to assist the injured man, who was found unconscious and buried beneath furniture as a result of the crash.
Queensland Police representatives confirmed that a CQ Rescue helicopter arrived on the scene to extract the man, due to the difficult terrain and prevailing weather conditions.
He was flown to Mackay Base Hospital with minor injuries.
Whitsunday Water Police Senior Constable, Brett Norris said the incident was a reminder of the risks of driving marine vessels alone.
"Sometimes unexpected events happen on the water," he said.
"If operating alone, it's even more important to plan for the unexpected and let someone know of your journey.
"In this case, we are pleased the man is expected to make a full recovery."
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