3 rescued from coral reef after multiple shark attacks damaged inflatable catamaran

Officials reminded citizens to “always carry a distress beacon when on the water.”

Three men rescued from coral reef after “multiple shark attacks” damaged their catamaran.

The Australian Maritime Safety Commission responded to the distress call around 1:30am EST on Wednesday morning, following an alert from a Russian-registered radio beacon indicating a state of emergency.

The lighthouse came with three people — two Russian citizens and a French citizen — from the nine-meter (29-foot) inflatable catamaran Dion.

The sailing had departed from Vanuatu in the South Pacific and was traveling to the coastal city of Cairns in Queensland, Australia. Although details are slim, according to AMSA, the stranded people were on their catamaran 835 km (519 miles) off the coast of Cairns in the Coral Sea. AMSA confirmed in a release that both of the catamaran’s hulls were “damaged following multiple shark attacks”.

After receiving the beacon signal, AMSA dispatched the Cairns-based Challenger rescue aircraft to the catamaran’s location and enlisted the assistance of the Panamanian-flagged vehicle carrier Dugong Ace.

All three have been rescued and are expected to arrive in Brisbane, Australia on Thursday morning.

No further information was immediately available.

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