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Boat 'Fully Engulfed' In Flames While On Whale Watching Trip

A boat on a whale watching trip has caught fire off the coast of Main Beach on the Gold Coast.

A group of eight friends set off from Southport at about 8am on Wednesday and headed about seven kilometres offshore in a bid to catch a glimpse of the sea creatures.

Image: Peter Sue Hardie

"At about that time the skipper has heard a bang and has gone down to the engine room to inspect the cause of that bag, has opened up the switchboard … and it has immediately combusted and a fire has broken out, " Senior Sergeant Jay Notaro from Gold Coast Police told media. 

The skipper gathered all eight people on a tender and then made a distress call to emergency services -- who responded to the call for help at about 9.30 am.

Map of Main Beach. Photo: Google Maps.

Smoke from the fire could be seen from land as it swirled into the air.

A spokesperson for Gold Coast Police told 10 daily the vessel was "fully engulfed in flames".

Image: Peter Sue Hardie

Everyone on board managed to flee the vessel safety and there are no reports of injury.

Contact Siobhan at skenna@networkten.com.au

Main image: Peter Sue Hardie