Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Coast Guard's Life Insights; Coast Guard and Water Police Conduct Search and Rescue Exercise on Cap Coast

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Coast Guard's Life Insights; Coast Guard and Water Police Conduct Search and Rescue Exercise on Cap Coast

Article excerpt

AS beach-goers watch the action of a search and rescue exercise on the Capricorn Coast, they can get an insight into the life of a volunteer rescuer with this Q&A.

The Coast Guard services across Central Queensland and the Gladstone Water Police will conduct a search and rescue exercise off the coast today.

Allan and Barbara Barsby give a sneak a peek behind the scenes of life as a local Coast Guard volunteer.

Allan is the Deputy Squadron Commodore for the CQ Squadron, which includes QF24 - Thirsty Sound; QF20 - Keppel Sands; QF19 - Rockhampton and QF11 - Yeppoon. QF20 asked about his experiences and highlights over the years and asked Barbara what it is like to be a spouse of a volunteer.

QF20: How long have you been in the Coast Guard & why did you join?

Allan: I first joined in 1977 when the Yeppoon Flotilla was located in a tin shed near the kiosk at Rosslyn Bay, but I took two short breaks in the early years. This time I have been back for 13 years. I decided to join because my neighbour suggested it when we moved to the area.

QF20: What has been your favourite moment?

Allan: Completing rescues is definitely a highlight, especially when everything goes smoothly.

QF20: What have been the scariest moments?

Allan: About four or five years ago we received a call to advise that someone was stranded on a sand bar at Corio Bay. We confirmed that they were in a small boat and stranded on the beach.

The tide was rising, so we were confident they would float off safely. We had to attend to another rescue and Corio Bay was on the way, so we called in to check everything was okay only to discover that the fellow was not in a boat and had walked across to fish with his three-year-old son and been trapped by the tide, still rising. He was standing neck deep with his son on his shoulders. Fortunately, everyone was fine and we helped them back to safety before continuing on our way.

Another time was just recently when we were searching for a missing person near Middle Percy. …

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