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Salvage effort to refloat trawler Dianne slowed by more bad weather

By Jess Lodge, Monday December 4, 2017 - 01:31 EDT
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A memorial to the crew of the Dianne at Seventeen Seventy. - ABC

Bad weather has delayed work on refloating a fishing trawler that capsized and sank off central Queensland in October, killing six people.

The Dianne sank in rough seas off the coast of Seventeen Seventy, claiming the lives of six of the seven men on board.

The bodies of crewmates Adam Hoffman and Ben Leahy were found in the sunken boat by divers about two to three nautical miles off Round Hill Headland, near Seventeen Seventy, after days of searching in dangerous seas.

Four other crewmen — Adam Bidner, Zachary Feeney, Chris Sammut and Eli Tonks — have not been found.

Ruben McDornan was the only person to be found alive.

Investigators hope bringing the Dianne to the surface will provide some answers to the victims' families.

But Inspector Darren Somerville said the salvage was a slow process, with bad weather hampering their efforts across the weekend.

"After today, the weather appears to be getting worse so it could be a number of days yet until we see the vessel refloated," he said.

Inspector Somerville said family members were being informed of progress throughout the recovery effort.

"They're obviously very keen to see why this event happened, why the vessel rolled over, and we're hopeful we can give them as many answers as possible by refloating it and then investigating the reasons why it occurred," he said.

"It's a tragedy and six people have lost their lives but hopefully by finding out why it occurred we can give some closure to the families."

After it is brought to the surface, the trawler will be taken to Bundaberg for further investigation by police and Maritime Safety Queensland.


© ABC 2017

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