Navy provides emergency medical transport to a fisherman off NT
25 January 2013
Royal Australian Navy personnel aboard HMAS Bathurst provided emergency medical transport for a man who suffered a suspected jellyfish fish sting last week.
Jason McCarthy, a crew member aboard the fishing vessel Exodus, suffered an Irukandji jellyfish sting about 63 nautical miles north of Melville Island in the Northern Territory.
The Armidale Class Patrol Boat and its crew from Attack Five (Lieutenant Commander Melanie Verho), who were assigned to border protection operations at the time, responded to a request from the Rescue Coordination Centre - Australia.
Headquarters Northern Command Operations officer, Lieutenant Commander Kylie Beumer said the patrol boat was dispatched from Darwin at short notice and rendezvoused with the fishing vessel in the Dundas Strait early in the morning on 22 January, returning to the patrol boat base, HMAS Coonawarrain Darwin by the early afternoon.
"The man was suffering pain after an Irukandji jellyfish sting which can be life threatening,” Lieutenant Commander Beumer said.
“The Recue Coordination Centre deemed that passage onboard the Armidale Class Patrol Boat was the fastest method of getting the man back to Darwin for urgent medical treatment.
“HMAS Bathurst, like all Navy vessels, has specially trained personnel who are able to provide a high level of first aid to ensure the safety of her passengers and crew,” Lieutenant Commander Beumer said.
After arriving at HMAS Coonawarra, Mr McCarthy was transported to hospital by Northern Territory Emergency Services.
The NT News has since reported he feared for his life when he couldn’t breathe after being stung, but the Navy gave him first class treatment.
“They’re gold, those guys,” he told the newspaper.