PHOTOS, VIDEO: 'Foul' could have sunk boat in a Gladstone river
WHAT was believed to be a perfectly intact boat moored in Calliope River was almost fully submerged yesterday morning before it came afloat in mysterious circumstances.
Police were desperately trying to track down the owner of the boat, a six-metre cruiser, after they received reports that it was sinking near the bridge on Hanson Rd.
Officers struggled to identify which of the boats was sinking on Saturday but it became clear by Sunday morning, with the cruiser's bow barely 15cm above the waterline.
Water police were called in to retrieve the boat's registration number from under water.
But, by afternoon, after photos of what appeared to be a doomed cruiser travelled across the region's Facebook fishing pages, the boat was fully afloat.
Police, who were readying themselves for a headache arranging for the boat to be salvaged, weren't aware of the turn of events when asked by The Observer late yesterday afternoon.
Rumours were rife about the cruiser's quick change of fate, one boating expert saying it could be as simple as the turning of the tide.
Darryl Branthwaite said his first impression when he looked at the photos was that the boat didn't have any water in it at all.
"If the anchor got fouled, if it got caught around something, it could definitely pull it under," he said.
"A log getting caught around it, or some sort of structure on the bottom, and all of sudden an anchors that's 30m long is 15m long.
"So when the rising tide comes in, it could have pulled it under.
"It might not have any water in at all."
Mr Branthwaite said the owner of the boat, if found, and had the boat sunk, would have been charged with the task of salvaging it, as "it's got a heap of fuels and chemicals on it"
"But apart from that, it's probably someone's pride and joy," he said.
POLICE are searching for the owner of a cruiser that has nearly sunk in the Calliope River, near the bridge on Gladstone's Hanson Rd.
Water police are on their way to inspect the leaking boat, estimated to be around 6m long, but police haven't been able to retrieve its registration number as it's currently under water.
Sergeant Kent Haley, of the Gladstone police, said it appears it wouldn't be long until the boat is completely under water.
The sinking boat was reported to police yesterday, but officers struggled to identify which of the boats was sinking.
Today, it's well and truly under water, with Sgt Haley saying "the bows only about six inches above water".
"We have to work out who it belongs to because it's about to go under water," he said.
"I don't think the owners aware of it."