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Cruiser found alight

An eight-metre motor cruiser moored in Woy Woy channel was discovered on fire by members of the Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol on June 28.

According to public relations officer Mr Ron Cole "an expensive disaster" was averted after the coastal patrol was undertaking a training exercise nearby and managed to contain the fire.

"Central Coast Coastal Patrol skipper Cameron Veacock and his crew onboard Coast Lifeboat were combining a training exercise in the Woy Woy channel and a trip to Booker Bay to refuel thelifeboat when they noticed smoke coming from therear of a moored eight metre fly-bridge motor cruiser," Mr Cole said.

"The vessel was just west of Lions Park in Woy Woychannel.

"The crew immediately began to check the vessel for persons onboard and also advised the Patrol Base at Point Clare by radio.

"The duty radio operator Pat Fayers notified the Water Police and a Police vessel from Broken Bay attended.

"Brisbane Water Lifeboat under command of Terry Reynolds was also directed to the area to be ready to assist in case it was necessary to move other vessels moored nearby.

"Central Coast Lifeboat's crew determined that there was no one aboard the cruiser.

"They found that the fire appeared to be in a bilge blower below decks at the rear of the vessel.

"Fortunately, the owner then arrived by dinghy and he was able to open a hatch enabling access so that the lifeboat's fire extinguisher was then able to control the fire.

"An expensive disaster was averted by the lucky co-incidence of a sharp eyed Coastal Patrol crew being at Woy Woy at just the right time."

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