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Port Kembla Marine Rescue crew completes lengthy late-night rescue

Volunteers on board Marine Rescue NSW vessel Port Kembla 31 have worked closely with NSW Police Marine Area Command to return two fishermen and their disabled boat safely to shore this week.

The fishermen radioed Marine Rescue Port Kembla just after 3pm yesterday (Tuesday July 4) after the steering broke on their 6.5 metre boat while fishing 35 nautical miles (65 kilometres) off Wollongong.

Marine Rescue NSW Inspector Stuart Massey said the disabled vessel was a long way off the coast.

“After assessing the location of the disabled vessel we contacted Marine Area Command who advised they had a vessel in the vicinity of the fishermen.

“Water Police Nemesis collected the fishermen and towed the disabled vessel back to approximately 1.5 nautical miles off Wollongong where they were met by Port Kembla 31 who completed the tow by taking the vessel to Wollongong Harbour,” he said.

Inspector Massey said the disabled vessel was safely returned to harbour at 11.30pm.

“Rescue crews were fortunate that conditions were benign allowing the response to run smoothly and safely.

“The distance involved and disappearing light made the initial part of the rescue challenging.

“This operation highlights the valuable working relationship that Marine Rescue NSW has with Marine Area Command and the ability for both agencies to work together to ensure a safe and positive outcome for boaters in distress,” Inspector Massey said.

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