RACQ CQ Rescue had to land on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship at dawn today, November 17, to retrieve a passenger and take them to Mackay Base.
Crew landed onboard the 311-metre long cruise ship around 200 km offshore early this morning to airlift the ill American traveller to Mackay Base Hospital.
During the 5-hour task, Mackay-based rescue helicopter departed its base just after 3 am and refueled at Hamilton Island before meeting Voyager of the Seas close to White Tip Reef, 185 km east of Hamilton Island at 5:30 a.m.
The 72-year-old woman from Michigan, U.S. was suffering severe abdominal pain and had to be transported to Mackay Base Hospital.
The patient was only half way into her trip as Voyager of the Seas departed Sydney November 13 on an 8-night Queensland cruise.
RACQ CQ Rescue landed on the front helideck of the ship and didn't shut down as the medical staff went below the deck to retrieve the passenger.
The patient arrived safely at the hospital at 7:40 a.m.