Recovery operation underway for man missing in Coral Sea (Cato Reef) out from Yeppoon

Hervey Bay Water Police are coordinating a recovery operation for a man missing in the Coral Sea near Cato Reef, approximately 260 nautical miles east of Yeppoon.

The 71-year-old man was noticed missing from a 15m sailing yacht, which was anchored near the reef, yesterday afternoon by a 23-year-old man, who then contacted authorities.

An aerial search was commenced by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority’s Joint Rescue Coordination Centre and Queensland police notified.

The QPS vessel PV Lyle M Hoey, a 24m catamaran, departed Yeppoon this morning with Water Police officers and members of the dive squad onboard.

Due to the remote and isolated location the PV Hoey is not due to arrive until the early hours of tomorrow morning (Monday, December 16).

Authorities remain in regular contact with the 23-year-old man.

It is believed the New South Wales men departed Scarborough (Redcliffe) last Tuesday, December 10 and travelled to the Cato Island / Cato Reef area.

Police remain in contact with the families of both men.

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