Carpenter Rocks boating tragedy survivor urges people to wear lifejackets

18 November 2013

A man has died after the boat he was in capsized at Carpenter Rocks near Port MacDonnell on Sunday 17 November.

The incident is an unfortunate reminder about how deadly the sea can be.

At about 4.50pm that afternoon, police and ambulance crews were called to Carpenter Rocks in the State’s south-east after reports that a dinghy containing two men was seen upturned about one kilometre west of the Cape Banks lighthouse.

Tha pair were drop netting for crayfish when their 5m boat capsized, reports.

Wayne Coates, A 49-year-old Mount Gambier man died at the scene. The other man, his best mate Craig Philip, managed to swim to shore.

Mr Philp said boaties should take Mr Coates' death as a tragic reminder to wear life jackets and be prepared on the water.

"Wear your life jacket for Christ's sake," he told

"It doesn't matter what you are doing, just put it on and make it habit.

"Most do, it's just sometimes you have a lapse of concentration or you get distracted.

"We had the jackets, we had them in our hands, I still can't for the life of me work out why he didn't put it on."

Police will be preparing a report for the coroner.


Personal flotation devices (life jackets)
Video: Choosing the right personal flotation device

Carpenter rocks