Whitfords Volunteer Sea Rescue Group saves men on capsized boat off Mindarie

Whitfords Volunteer Sea Rescue Group member Peter Peebles. Photo: Martin Kennealey d473798
Whitfords Volunteer Sea Rescue Group member Peter Peebles. Photo: Martin Kennealey d473798

FOUR men were “very lucky” to escape without injury after they spent more than an hour and a half clinging to their capsized boat in 2m swell yesterday afternoon.

Whitfords Volunteer Sea Rescue Group (WVSRG) were alerted to the incident about 1km offshore and 2km north of Mindarie at 3.46pm.

Deputy radio operations leader Peter Peebles said rescue vessel Green 2 was deployed from Hillarys Boat Harbour by 4.10pm, while the police helicopter was already in the area.

The capsized boat was found at 4.42pm, with the four men transferred to the rescue boat and back to Mindarie Marina by 5pm.

“It was just on an hour from WVSRG being alerted to the men being rescued – a great outcome,” Mr Peebles said.

“They had been sitting on their capsized boat for about 90 minutes before being rescued.”

Whitfords Volunteer Sea Rescue Group vessel Green 2.

Mr Peebles said they “got the men warm and hydrated” when they returned to the marina but were satisfied medical attention was not required.

He said it was a good time to remind boaters to ensure all safety equipment was on board and in date, people used life jackets and skippers logged on with a local rescue group.

The rescue follows a busy 2018 for WVSRG with about 24,300 radio and telephone calls handled by its radio operations centre.

Mr Peebles said the group’s vessels conducted 257 jobs, which included 40 to help with helicopter training for the Royal Australian Air Force, WA Police and RAC, and helped 360 people and three dogs to safety.

“Our vessels were on the water for 1600 hours and covered approximately 30,000km from City Beach to Alkimos and up to 50 nautical miles out to sea,” he said.

“Our vessels were on the water on 265 days, either patrolling or in training.”