State Government of Queensland

06/19/2018 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/19/2018 02:25

Scuttling of ex-HMAS Tobruk postponed

The scuttling of ex-HMAS Tobruk has been postponed due to unfavourable weather conditions, to ensure the safety of everyone involved.

The original scuttling was scheduled for today (Tuesday), dependent on weather conditions, but Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef Leeanne Enoch said it could not go ahead as it was unsafe.

'The scuttling of ex-HMAS Tobruk is heavily dependent on weather conditions to ensure a safe and successful operation,' Ms Enoch said.

'While we are all keen to witness this historic event, the safety of everyone involved is priority.

'Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service, Maritime Safety Queensland and the Harbour Masters are watching the weather closely to identify two new days for the towing and scuttling of ex-HMAS Tobruk.

'Once the experts have identified new dates, we will update the public so that anyone keen to come and watch can make plans,' Ms Enoch said.

Project Manager Steven Hoseck explained that a successful tow out and scuttling is dependent on tides and wind conditions.

'Scuttling a massive ship like this has a lot of complexities, so we are currently monitoring tides and wind predictions,' Mr Hoseck said.

'As we all know, weather can be unpredictable so we will only get a couple of days' notice once we decide to go ahead, however it would still be subject to change at the last minute.

'Anyone wanting to come and watch the scuttling will need to be ready to come out with only a couple of days' notice.

'We have extended the first window of opportunity out until Thursday 28 June, and if weather is not favourable, the second window is from Tuesday 3 July to Tuesday 10 July,' Mr Hoseck said.

The scuttling will occur approximately 22 nautical miles from Bundaberg, and 25 nautical miles from Hervey Bay.

Spectators viewing the scuttling from their vessel must remain outside the 500 metre exclusion zone and can tune into marine VHF channel 68 for updates during the event.

Media contact: 0437 859 987