The Matahari being towed along Mooloolaba Beach.
The Matahari being towed along Mooloolaba Beach. Patrick Woods

Deckhand fined for falling asleep before Matahari grounding

THE 19-year-old deckhand who fell asleep at the wheel before the Matahari boat ran aground at Mooloolaba Beach has been fined $2500.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority took compliance action against the crew member following an investigation into the incident.

The skipper and another female passenger were asleep below decks when the boat ran aground on July 15, just before 10pm.

 

The Matahari being towed along Mooloolaba Beach.
The Matahari being towed along Mooloolaba Beach. Patrick Woods

Aussie Red Crabs co-owner Jason Simpson, who also owned the crabbing vessel, told the ABC the deckhand and the skipper no longer worked for the company.

HOW THE STORY EVOLVED

"We are reiterating you've got to use your alarms, you've got to set your alarms every five minutes when you're on auto-pilot," Mr Simpson said.

"It's not an excuse to sleep, you've got to be aware. That's what it simply came down to."

He said while insurance didn't cover the costs of replacing the vessel, the company had bounced back more determined than ever, buying two new boats to further extend the fleet.



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