Fourteen people, all believed to be from the same family, have been rescued after their boat caught fire and overturned off the coast of Gladstone this morning.
Thirteen people who were involved in the “marine accident” were rescued by Water Police and a fourteenth person was winched to safety by a rescue helicopter.
The person on board the helicopter was being treated for exhaustion and hypothermia and is being taken to Gladstone Hospital, according to Queensland Ambulance.
It is understood the boat was the MV Norval, which overturned and caught fire about 9.00am at Rock Cod Shoal, about 20 kilometres off Gladstone.
The 14 people on board initially evacuated onto a dory which then began taking on water.
The boat’s owner Ron Murphy operates a charter business out of Gladstone and said the occupants were all members of the same local family.
“It was supposed be a trip where the whole family could get together and spend some time in a loving, family atmosphere,” he said.
The MV Norval is an 18-metre vessel that can cater to 11 passengers with three crew.
The vessel’s usual skipper was piloting the vessel with his own family on board.
The 13 people being transported by water police will be assessed by paramedics once they have returned to shore.
Two helicopters were earlier sent to the scene.