HOW long does it take for a ghost ship to drift from waters south of Sydney down to the Far South Coast?
Well, about three months if the curious case of the stricken yacht Streaker abandoned offshore back in October is anything to go by.
Police have inspected a yacht towed into Batemans Bay north of Narooma last night, three months to the day when it was abandoned during the rescue of its owner.
Yachtsman, Glenn Ey, activated an emergency locator beacon (EPIRB) about 8:15am on Tuesday, October 16, after his 11-metre yacht, Streaker, was de-masted when hit by a wave off the east coast of Sydney. The vessel ran out of fuel a short time later and began to drift.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) received the emergency beacon signal and co-ordinated a search and rescue operation.
The search involved the use of two passing commercial aircraft, a rescue Dornier aircraft, a merchant vessel and NSW Police launch ‘Nemesis’.
The crew of the Dornier aircraft located ‘Streaker’ about 270 nautical miles off the east coast.
About 3:45am Wednesday, October 17, Nemesis rescued Mr Ey from his yacht. Police were unable to tow the vessel back and warnings were issued for all ships in the area.
Nemesis battled strong seas and bad weather while returning to Marine Area Command in Balmain at 3.15am the following day.
Then yesterday, a recreational fishing vessel off Batemans Bay alerted water police they had the Streaker under tow and were returning to port.
Police have sighted the vessel and believe it to be the same yacht abandoned three months ago.
It is now under the control of Roads and Maritime Services.