LNP pledges $1 million for new marine rescue boat
STATE Opposition leader Tim Nicholls has hit the campaign trail, pledging $1 million for a new vessel for Hervey Bay Volunteer Marine Rescue.
Mr Nicholls, who stopped in Hervey Bay yesterday on his tour of regional Queensland, said the new boat would support the work of the water rescue service and help improve safety for local boaties.
Joined by Hervey Bay MP Ted Sorensen, Mr Nicholls said the group had been crying out for a new vessel.
"The hard-working VMR staff do an amazing job already in keeping Hervey Bay locals safe, but with $1 million from the LNP to buy a new boat they can do so much more," Mr Nicholls said.
"The Hervey Bay VMR plays a critical role in keeping local residents and boaties safe when they are out on the beautiful waters of the Bay and beyond."
Mr Sorensen said the volunteers game over 25,000 of their own time to help out on the water.
"Hervey Bay is well-known for its recreational fishing and our population swells considerably in the holiday season, keeping the VMR busy with rescues," Mr Sorensen said.
"There are more than 250,000 registered recreational water craft in this region alone and the VMR have been struggling with an older boat an increased demand.
"So far this year they have been involved in 135 operations, helping more than 284 people."
Draft designs of the new boat reveal it will be at least 12m long and will have a longer range.
Vice commodore of Hervey Bay VMR Jill Barclay said the group had been designing a vessel that would work for the Hervey Bay area.
She said the boat would be able to get closer to the beach, allowing for easier rescue missions.
"It is an amazing thing to be given this money... it will allow us to move forward and take this squadron into the next ten to 15 years with this new boat," Ms Barclay said.
"It's a specific design, specifically for this area."