Royal Australian Air Force and Navy rushing to save 26 Indonesian sailors stranded off Perth coast

Joey Catanzaro and Michael TraillThe West Australian
The Royal Australian Air Force and Navy are scrambling to rescue a partially-submerged Indonesian fishing boat off Perth’s coast.
Camera IconThe Royal Australian Air Force and Navy are scrambling to rescue a partially-submerged Indonesian fishing boat off Perth’s coast. Credit: Achmad Ibrahim/AP

The Royal Australian Air Force and Navy are scrambling to rescue a partially-submerged Indonesian fishing boat off Perth’s coast.

Australian maritime authorities received a distress signal this morning from the vessel — believed to have 26 people onboard — 1200km due west of Perth.

A search and rescue jet was first deployed from Perth to locate the boat, which is understood to be taking on water.

Royal Australian Air force planes from Sydney and Melbourne as well as Australian warship HMAS Anzac have also been dispatched.

HMAS Anzac is not expected to reach the stricken vessel until Saturday afternoon.

The search and rescue plane managed to drop two life rafts near the ship this morning.

It is unclear whether any of the stranded sailors managed to climb aboard.

Authorities are yet to determine why the vessel was so far south of Indonesian waters.

More to come.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails