A father and daughter who survived a family boating tragedy on Thursday have been discharged from hospital while their flipped catamaran remains floating at sea.
Jeremy Cooper, 50, and daughter Emma, 16, were pulled from the boat by volunteers on a Westpac rescue helicopter on Thursday morning and treated for hypothermia at John Hunter Hospital in Newcastle.
They had been clinging to their catamaran after it capsized in rough seas.
Mr Cooper's 78-year-old parents from Sydney and a family friend from the Central Coast, 67, died when the 11.7-metre vessel capsized in 30-knot winds and a two-metre swell.
An emergency beacon alerted the joint rescue centre in Canberra to the boat's location off Stockton Beach near Newcastle about 10.10 am. The family had been making its way from Shoal Bay to Ettalong.
The catamaran could not be retrieved on Friday as a combination of heavy seas and the vessel's size prevented a salvage team from bringing it to shore.
"It was quite a traumatic scene for all," Ambulance NSW Inspector Luke Wiseman said.
"Quite high sea conditions, with significant winds. It was rough when they got there and they had a lot of debris to contend with."
An investigation into how the accident happened is underway.
With the Newcastle Herald