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A sailor has been rescued from his disabled yacht after it was swamped by a wave attempting to cross the Ballina Bar at around 3.30pm Thursday.

The Surf Emergency Response System was activated by Police requesting assistance for a 25ft yacht taking on water near the north breakwall of the Richmond River.

The vessel had lost its mast during the trip north from Forster to Brisbane and the skipper was attempting to cross the bar at Ballina when he was swamped by a large wave.

The Ballina Jet Rescue Boat, Duty Officers and the Far North Coast Support Operations Group all attended the incident along with NSW Maritime and the man was brought to shore by the Jet Boat just after 4pm. He was treated by Paramedics and transported to hospital after ingesting some water and was experiencing chest pain and shortness of breath.

State Duty Officer Jimmy Keough attended and said the man was lucky to have been rescued safely.

“It was a coordinated, joint agency effort with everyone responding quickly which made this rescue a success,” said Jimmy Keough.

“He is extremely lucky as the ocean conditions are expected to continue to deteriorate over the coming days.”

The vessel was unable to towed across the bar due to the conditions and has sunk while being brought back to Lighthouse Beach.


Friday 6 April 2018