Boat owners are being urged to keep their vessels maintained after another houseboat began to sink on the Gold Coast today, the third in just months.
Several crews including The Volunteer Marine Rescue, Gold Coast Water Police and Gold Coast Waterways Authority were called to waters just west of Wavebreak Island around 11.00am, after concerned members of the public reported seeing the boat start to sink near Parr Street in Biggera Waters.
Queensland Ambulance Paramedics were also called to the scene, however luckily no one was injured.
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It’s understood Maritime Safety Queensland and the Gold Coast Waterways Authority are currently speaking with the owner of the boat, who was reportedly seen trying to save furniture and other belongings shortly after the vessel started taking on water.
Minister for Transport and Main Roads Mark Bailey told myGC that boats sinking in our waterways is becoming a real concern.
“This is the third houseboat to sink in as many months and I will be asking the War on Wrecks taskforce to look at what we can do to ensure boat owners are doing the right thing and not allowing them to sink,” Mr Bailey said.
“Our waterways are not a dumping ground, they need to be respected and people need to keep their boats in order.”
If a boat sinks, the owners are required to pay for the recovery, however Minister Bailey says its sometimes the taxpayers that end up footing the bill to recover the sunken vessels.
“It is the responsibility of a boat owner to cover the cost, but clearly in some cases they’re not able to do that and it’s the taxpayers picking up the bill and that’s totally unacceptable,” he said.
“People have to maintain a car and a house, they have to maintain a boat, and unfortunately the ramifications if they don’t is something that affects our waterways and that is unacceptable.”