VMR were tasked to collect the injured crew member.
VMR were tasked to collect the injured crew member.

Midnight journey rescues injured coal ship worker

A 44-YEAR-OLD crew member from a foreign bulk coal carrier was transported to shore by Volunteer Marine Rescue, after suffering oil burns to both his hands.

VMR skipper Don Bowden said his crew and a Queensland Ambulance Service paramedic set out just before midnight on Friday to retrieve the injured man.

He said it was about a five mile journey to the anchored freighter and sidling alongside to collect the worker was difficult.

"You've got to wait for the right time to get the gangway, like a stairway, down," Mr Bowden said.

"It's a little bit difficult."

He said they returned to Mackay Harbour at about 2.30am Saturday morning.

The injured worker was then taken to Mackay Base Hospital.

A QAS spokesman explained a helicopter was not tasked to the job because of fog and because the freighter had a weight limit.

Mackay Base Hospital have been contacted for an update on the patient.

It is not known which company the freighter belonged to.