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Six fishermen missing in capsize off Australian coast


Six fishermen missing in capsize off Australian coast

Image caption Police have found debris from the trawler, which capsized on Monday

Six fishermen are missing after their trawler capsized and sank off the east coast of Australia.

A seventh man managed to survive being stranded for about 12 hours in waters near the Queensland town of Seventeen Seventy, according to authorities.

He survived by clinging to the boat's hull before treading water until he was seen by a passing yacht, local media said.

Search teams have found debris but no trace of the missing men.

They have been named as Ben Leahy, aged 45, Eli Tonks, 39, Adam Bidner, 33, Zach Feeney, 28, Adam Hoffman, aged 30, and Chris Sammut, 34.

Image caption Adam Hoffman, 30, was on board the stricken trawler

The 17m (55ft) commercial fishing trawler, Dianne, capsized at 19:30 local time on Monday (09:30 GMT) and sank about five hours later.

The Courier Mail newspaper named the rescued man as Ruben McDornan, and reported that he had heard crewmates trying to escape the vessel after it capsized.

Mr McDornan was saved on Tuesday morning after a yacht crew heard his cries for help.

"It was only through sheer luck that a passing couple on a yacht managed to hear the screams of the individual that was rescued," said Queensland police Sgt Jeff Barnett, the search co-ordinator.

"If it had not been for that we still wouldn't know."

Police said they had not detected any emergency transmissions or beacons from the vessel.

Wet weather hindered the search on Tuesday. Search vessels, aircraft and local trawlers returned to the area on Wednesday.

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