Two sailors who were stranded in shark-infested waters after their boat capsized at dusk thought they were done for when their distress signal went unnoticed.
Samuel Martel and Guy Sherro’s two-man catamaran capsized six kilometres off the Brisbane coast in rough waters on Tuesday evening.
They were marooned about halfway between King and Green Island in Moreton Bay.
‘The boat was still upside down and we were in the water and it got dark by that time, it was dusk, so we tried to stay out of the water as much as we could for shark reasons,’ Mr Martel told The Courier-Mail.
‘Being upside down in the water for so long we were starting to realise (the boat) was getting lower and lower, so if we were out there too long it wouldn’t have ended too great for us.’
Samuel Martel and Guy Sherro’s two man catamaran capsized six kilometres off the Brisbane coast in rough waters on Tuesday evening
As darkness began to fall at about 5pm, Mr Martel and Mr Sherro decided to let off a flare in a last ditch effort to alert a rescue crew
As darkness began to fall at about 5pm, Mr Martel and Mr Sherro decided to let off a flare in a last ditch effort to alert a rescue crew.
‘We actually deployed it at a vessel approaching us, so we thought for sure they’ll see it and rescue us but they carried on by,’ Mr Martel said.
But the flare caught the attention of a mystery bystander who was walking along the shore 6km away. They immediately called for help.
Samuel Martel (pictured) is an experienced yachtsman from Brisbane
Guy Sherro (left) and his friend Samuel Martel thanked the unknown person who spotted the flare for alerting them
Mr Martel praised the coast guard’s response, with rescuers arriving to their capsized boat within a few minutes.
The pair were only stranded for less than an hour, but said their minds raced as both began to fear the worst.
Brisbane Coast Guard thanked the unknown person who spotted the flare for alerting them.
‘Thanks to the member of the public who sighted the flare and gave an accurate description of its location to the police,’ a statement read.
They also said the rescue acted as a warning to always pack safety equipment.
‘They were located quickly due to the fact they had the correct safety gear onboard and knew how to use it. A timely reminder not to leave shore without it,’ a spokesman said.
The pair were only stranded for about 45 minutes before the Brisbane Coast Guard rescued them