Two adults and a child were rescued along the Daly River on Thursday afternoon after their fishing boat capsized in bad weather.
According to a Northern Territory Police media release on Friday, the trio were on a fishing trip when their vessel was overturned and beached, forcing them to activate their emergency beacon (EPIRB).
They also wrote a message in the sand to alert rescuers and indicate that they were okay.
In response to activation of the EPIRB, the trio was located by air, around 2 p.m. and transported to Darwin for assessment.
Acting Senior Sergeant Isobel Cummins said that if the trio hadn’t been able to activate their beacon, they might have been stranded on that beach for a lot longer in what she said can be best described as “unfavourable conditions.”
“This was a fantastic result, and we are all very happy to see these fishos back safe and sound,” she said.
This comes after a similar but more serious incident occurred along the same river in November 2021, in which the men involved were unable to activate their EPIRB.
The men became stranded on an island just 90 minutes into a four-day fishing trip after their boat struck a submerged object near Clear Creek on the Daly River, NT News reported.
According to an NT Police media release, the boat sank within seconds, and the men could not retrieve their mobile phones or trigger their emergency beacon in time.
Police Territory Support Division Superintendent Shaun Gill said they managed to get to the bank, surviving the intense heat without food and fresh water, and minus their phones or emergency beacons.
“They had no water to drink to the point where they found bottles on the beach where they tried to drink urine mixed with Berocca,” he said.
According to Acting Sergeant Troy Harris from the Water Police Section, it appeared that the men had initially “taken every safety precaution prior to this trip.”
He also indicated they had done the right thing by swimming directly to the nearest land, trying to attract attention, and staying put.
“This incident highlights the need for a ‘grab bag’ with safety gear that is easily accessible because the unexpected can happen, and it can happen in a matter of seconds,” he said.