One patient was airlifted to Rockhampton Hospital after being found onboard a stranded boat off Heron Island.
One patient was airlifted to Rockhampton Hospital after being found onboard a stranded boat off Heron Island. RACQ Capricorn Rescue

Two attempts at dramatic rescue for stranded boat

ONE person has been rescued after their vessel was stranded on the reef in low tide off Heron Island this morning.

At 1am, the RACQ Capricorn Rescue Helicopter was dispatched to the location of an emergency beacon signal.

Crews found a 21ft boat was stuck on the reef in low tide when the arrived.

After advice from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, the helicopter was told to return at first light to attempt to board the boat.

As they returned to the boat at sunrise, crews were unable to establish communications with anyone on board.

A crewman was then winched on board - where they found the sole occupant.

Higher tide waters were able to dislodge the boat from the reef, where it was transported back to Heron Island.

The patient was stabilised on the island before being airlifted to Rockhampton Hospital for further treatment.