Anglers Rescued – Daly River

Northern Territory Police say three fisherman who had to be rescued after a fishing trip yesterday are shaken by their ordeal.

It was reported to police that the three Darwin men struck a sandbar downstream of the Daly River mouth which damaged the water pump and overheated the motor.

Border Force reported the incident to police, however the men were able to restart the engine and begin the return to Daly River with adequate food and water.

During the return trip, the men aged 37, 29 and 27, experienced a severe thunderstorm, an aggressive saltwater crocodile repeatedly ramming their boat and nearly capsized after hitting a submerged object.

“At approximately 7:40pm the men activated their Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB) and Daly River police officers headed out to find the trio,” Acting Senior Sergeant David Young said.

“Our officers carried out the search with marine spotlights for more than two hours and weren’t initially able to locate the fishermen, who weren’t in the reported location.

“The men were found stranded just near the public boat ramp floating in the middle of the Daly River just after midnight after their engine had completely failed.

“It was a pretty traumatic experience for these men, one of whom had never been on a boat before.

“Nearly everything that could go wrong did go wrong, but luckily these men have lived to tell the tale,” Acting Senior Sergeant Young said.

“We’d like to take this opportunity to remind would-be anglers to make sure they’re well prepared for rough or unexpected conditions on the water.

“It’s great that those on board carried the required safety equipment and activated their EPIRB as the situation deteriorated. The fact that they had adequate food and water on board is another example of good preparation.

“We would remind those heading out on the water that conditions can change very quickly this time of year, with frequent severe weather and storm warnings issued by the Bureau of Meteorology. It’s important to keep an eye on conditions and adjust your plans accordingly,” A/SSgt Young said.

“We want everyone to think ahead and stay safe out on the water.”

More information on water safety is available on the Northern Territory Police website: http://www.pfes.nt.gov.au/Police/Community-safety/On-the-water.aspx

/Public Release. View in full here.