• The sailing vessel is towed back to Gladstone. Photo Queensland Police.
    The sailing vessel is towed back to Gladstone. Photo Queensland Police.
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An extensive air and water search for a 54-year-old man who fell from a sailing boat in waters off Bustard Head which began on Friday has been scaled back. The boat is believed to have been en route from Gladstone to Bundaberg.

Another person on board the vessel activated an EPIRB, sparking a marathon air and land search for the man which has already spanned more than 100 square miles.

The police coordinated the search, involving water police, rescue helicopters, VMR Bundaberg and Roundhill vessels, with weather conditions hindering search efforts.

Police appealed to any vessels in the search area, approximately 20 nautical miles east of Bustard Head, to contact police if they have any information that may assist with the search.

Police would like to encourage everyone to wear life jackets and carry safety equipment when they are on the water and to check the weather before you go out.

Acting Sergeant Stacey Van Der Zwan said the 54-year-old from Bundaberg was not wearing a lifejacket when he fell overboard on Saturday.

- Queensland Police

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