Fisherman still missing off Townsville

·1-min read

A rescue operation for a missing Queensland fisherman may be scaled back as the search off Townsville enters its third day.

Colin Palmer and his friend fell overboard when their boat was hit by a wave at about 12am on Saturday.

The pair tried to stick together and make their way toward shore, but were separated in dark, choppy conditions. The friend was later rescued.

Crews in a helicopter and on boats began scouring Cleveland Bay at first light on Monday, looking for any sign of the 41-year old or his vessel.

"Later on this afternoon...we'll revisit that, with a view to maybe scaling down the search," Senior Sergeant Robert Dusha said on Monday.

But rescue crews still hold out hope they will find the missing man, he said.

Mr Palmer's friend was spotted by crew on a commercial fishing vessel and rescued at about 6.30am on Saturday.

The 45-year-old man was suffering exposure and taken to hospital in a stable condition.

Maritime Safety Queensland, Australian Maritime Safety Authority, Coast Guard, Volunteer Marine Rescue, Surf Lifesaving Queensland and QGAir searched more than 600 square nautical miles on Sunday, but didn't find any sign of Mr Palmer or the boat.

Police are urging anyone who has seen a white Quintrex coast runner about four metres long with Queensland registration RD806Q to contact them.

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