Capsized vessel found near Bronte. Pictures: Channel 7
Capsized vessel found near Bronte. Pictures: Channel 7

Mystery as capsized cruiser appears off coast

A boat has mysteriously appeared off Bronte after capsizing on the mid-north coast early on Australia Day, with two men aboard.

A 37-year-old man was saved but a 74-year-old man is still missing.

The pair are believed to be father and son.

The 42-foot cruiser, named Eliza 1, was spotted one nautical mile off the eastern suburbs at 5am on Thursday morning.

It was spotted by Marine Rescue NSW during a training exercise around Bronte.

A surf lifesaving crew also attended.

About 2.30am on Sunday, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority detected an emergency distress beacon, or EPIRB, that was registered to a boat near Forster.

The EPIRB was activated 6.5 nautical miles east of Bluey's beach early Sunday morning.

Capsized vessel found near Bronte. Pictures: Channel 7
Capsized vessel found near Bronte. Pictures: Channel 7

Officers from the Newcastle Marine Area Command initiated a search northeast of Forster, involving a Westpac helicopter and a fixed wing aircraft.

The boat had flipped in pitch darkness, with two men on board.

A small tender vessel from a nearby container ship, the Morobe Chief, recovered a 37-year-old man an hour later and he was taken to shore by the intrepid Police boat.

However, a 74-year-old is still missing.

Also at the scene were two helicopters, the Forster 30 from Marine Rescue NSW and two bulk carriers.

Police have confirmed he was not on the vessel when it was searched earlier today.

An active search for the 74-year-old is no longer underway.

Capsized vessel found near Bronte. Pictures: Channel 7
Capsized vessel found near Bronte. Pictures: Channel 7

The vessel is believed to have been travelling from Queensland to Newcastle.

A salvage operation is underway by the owners of the boat.

More to come.

Capsized vessel found near Bronte. Pictures: Channel 7
Capsized vessel found near Bronte. Pictures: Channel 7
News Corp Australia

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