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Abbot Point Operations proudly sponsors Volunteer Marine Rescue Bowen’s new rescue vessel

Abbot Point Operations proudly sponsors Volunteer Marine Rescue Bowen’s new rescue vessel

Abbot Point Operations proudly sponsors Volunteer Marine Rescue Bowen’s new rescue vessel

3 June 2021

Abbot Point Operations (APO) and Volunteer Marine Rescue’s partnership has now officially set sail with the launch of a new state-of-the-art-rescue vessel for the local Bowen volunteer group.

APO General Manager, Allan Brown, said they were delighted to sponsor such an important organisation within the Bowen community.

“The hardworking and enthusiastic volunteers from VMR Bowen provide a vital service for our seaside community, our recreational fisherman and out of town visitors,” Mr Brown said.

“It has been heart-warming to see our local community rally behind VMR Bowen and as a business with a local Bowen workforce we are honoured to be able to support them on their journey to a new vessel.

“VMR Bowen has previously assisted our own APO emergency response teams with medical evacuation support, having evacuated ship’s crew members in need of medical assistance.  From our perspective, VMR Bowen plays a critical role to keep people safe in the marine environment.”

Over the past two years VMR Bowen has been fundraising for a well-overdue vessel upgrade to allow the continued safe operation of their marine rescue service.

The two-year fundraising effort came to fruition on 26 April when members of the Volunteer Marine Rescue Bowen launched their first new state-of-the-art, purpose-built rescue vessel in almost 20 years, the “Rescue Bowen”.

VMR Bowen’s Fundraising Coordinator, Ted Gatkowski, said they were proud the ongoing partnership with APO had paid off with the launch of the new vessel and a renewed interest in the volunteer organisation from the local community.

“Over the last two and a half years our Vessel Replacement Program has developed a greater awareness of VMR Bowen’s activities and role within the community, and since the arrival of our new boat there has been a noticeable increase in interest from younger people to get involved with us,” he said.

“This is something that we had hoped for and are positively thrilled about.”

APO staff involved in volunteering with VMR Bowen are permitted to be released from work to assist with rescue operations when required.

“We are pleased that our partnership with APO and its Community Volunteering Policy will enable the release of staff during working hours where possible, and assist us with manning “Rescue Bowen” when necessary,” Mr Gatkowski said.

“This is of massive benefit to us and demonstrates APO’s ongoing commitment to community involvement.”

APO’s community partnership program provides significant funding each year to community groups, organisations and initiatives in the Whitsunday Regional Council communities of Bowen and Collinsville.

Since 2017, more than $1.2 million has been awarded under the program.

To find out more about APO’s community partnership program, visit