A houseboat on the Tweed River at Tumbulgum. It required towing as it could not make headway against the strong current.
A houseboat on the Tweed River at Tumbulgum. It required towing as it could not make headway against the strong current. Blainey Woodham

House boats rescued

RUNAWAY house boats presented an urgent challenge for State Emergency Service volunteers early on Sunday.

Shortly after 8am, the SES was called to assist several people who had hired a house boat which was in danger of being washed down the river at Tumbulgum.

Murwillumbah SES controller Chris Chrisostomos said his members secured the boat to a concrete pylon but were then called to assist the hirer of a larger “fifty footer” which was being swept down the river.

“It had debris wrapped around the motor and the motor had stalled,” Mr Chrisostomos said.

“It was being swept down the river and could have wrapped itself around one of the pylons of the Boyd’s Bay Bridge.”

Mr Chrisostomos said a boat that size needed to head under the bridge “head to tail” and SES members managed to steer it through the pylons.

They then used an electric winch on the boat to raise the motor, which sat between twin hulls, and clear away the debris before restarting the engine.

He said SES members also swam several stranded horses to safety in the Murwillumbah and Nobbys Creek areas.



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