3 people were rescued from the Coral Sea after multiple shark attacks damaged an inflatable raft

Officials reminded citizens to “always carry a distress beacon while on the water.”

Three people have been rescued from the Coral Sea after “multiple shark attacks” damaged their raft.

Following an alert from a radio beacon registered in Russia identifying the emergency location, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority responded to the distress call early Wednesday morning at approximately 1:30 a.m. AEST.

The lighthouse came from a nine-metre (29-foot) inflatable raft with three people on board – two Russian citizens and a French citizen.

The sailing group had departed Vanuatu, in the South Pacific, and was bound for Cairns, a coastal city in Queensland, Australia. While details are scant, the stranded people were in their raft 835 kilometers (519 miles) off the coast of Cairns in the Coral Sea, according to AMSA. AMSA confirmed in a statement that the boat’s hulls “were damaged after several shark attacks.”

After receiving the beacon signal, AMSA dispatched a Cairns-based Challenger rescue aircraft to the boat’s location and obtained the assistance of Dugong Ace, a vehicle carrier sailing under the Panamanian flag.

The three people were rescued and are expected to arrive in Brisbane, Australia, on Thursday morning.

No other information was immediately available.

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