Boaties rescued after freak storm leaves them stranded

After a rough night sleeping on a remote central Queensland beach, a pair of stranded boaties has been airlifted to safety by RACQ CQ Rescue.

The couple, whose boat had been smashed into rocks during a freak storm on Tuesday, was forced to abandon their five-metre vessel and camp on Avoid Island, 100km south of Mackay.

The Clairview pair was airlifted to Mackay by RACQ CQ Rescue Wednesday morning after they activated an EPIRB.

RACQ CQ Rescue air crewman Quinton Rethus said the crew was about 20km from the island when they picked up the distress signal and was able to pinpoint the exact location of the beacon.

They found the relieved couple waving from the beach and could clearly see where they had written ‘HELP’ in huge letters in the sand.

Despite some cuts and bruises, they were otherwise uninjured and in good health.