‘Final piece of puzzle’ to make boaties safer
WORK on a new pontoon and rock wall at Marine Rescue Hervey Bay's base has been completed in time for its new vessel Rescue 1 which is expected to arrive by the end of the year.
Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt said it was great to see the completed pontoon and associated works which included a rock wall and new grass space.
The works were fully funded by a $160,000 grant from the Federal Government.
"Marine Rescue Hervey Bay provides a vital service in our region to the boating public and the local island community," he said.
The squadron completed 248 operational activations in 2019, helping 381 people.
Marine Rescue Hervey Bay Commodore Jill Barclay said the Federal Government grant for the pontoon meant the base was ready for the new vessel to arrive.
"It's taken many years of seeking funds and grants to secure Rescue I and having the appropriate berthing facilities was the final piece in the puzzle," she said.
Ms Barclay said the new 12-metre Rescue vessel is being built by Allweld Manufacturing in Maryborough and was made possible through a $400,000 grant from Hand Heart Pocket, the charity of Freemasons Queensland.
Rescue 1 is expected to be completed before the end of the year, but will not be commissioned until early in 2021.
"Without such generous support from Hand Heart Pocket, supported by the local Freemasons groups, we may have still been waiting to build this much needed rescue vessel, which is expected to serve the Fraser Coast community for next 15 years or more," she said.
The new boat will allow the organisation to expand their search capacity and result in a safe more comfortable ride for volunteers and people in need.
Ms Barclay said a large number of activations are for people requiring medical attention on Fraser Island.
The new boat has been fully customised to facilitate a hospital stretcher.