Police provide an update on the search for missing White rock woman Madison Tam.

Babinda Boulders remain closed.


Article heading image for Police provide an update on the search for missing White rock woman Madison Tam.

Local police and emergency services continue to scour the banks of the river today after a search of the swift water tragically failed to locate our 18-year-old White Rock woman Madison Tam, missing after swimming with others at the Babinda Boulders on Tuesday.

Members of the QPS specialist Police Dive Squad and QFES Swift Water Rescue Team worked throughout the day yesterday searching underwater zones at the boulders in extremely dangerous conditions.

Photo by A/Inspector Glen De Lai

Police will continue searching river banks and course and have expanded the zone some 5 km down stream.

The young woman who went missing in Devils Pool at the Babinda Boulders at about 3 pm on Monday, approximately 60 km south of Cairns, when she failed to resurface after swimming between two rocks at the popular recreational area.

Police divers were called into search the deep pools, arriving on Tuesday and worked tirelessly in their search.

Detective Acting Inspector Jason Smith today explained the conditions were extremely dangerous.

“Our police divers are highly regarded and experienced professionals and they’ve been thorough throughout their searches”, D/A/Insp Smith said.

“These rock pools are deep, fast flowing and over time, deep crevices have eroded in the massive boulders at the water hole.

“The dangers were very real for our divers and the force of the water into one crevice was so strong we feared our diver would not be retrieved.

“As such our multi-agency land and water search will continue and we thank our police divers, search and rescue co-ordinators and search teams, our SES search teams, QFES Swift Water Rescue teams and other QFES personnel and QAS teams for their tireless efforts to date.

A road block is currently in place, no traffic other than emergency services are permitted to enter the Babinda Boulders area.

Cairns Regional Council have worked closely with Police and erected signage today, closing the Babinda Boulders.

This includes the section of roadway into the Boulders area to prevent persons from driving into the area. The road closure will still allow resident access only to their properties.

In addition to this, the Rotary Park swimming hole and the free camping ground at that location are closed in response to COVID-19. Access to this locations is also closed.

Additional signage is erected in the Babinda township and a VMS board at the entry to Babinda, advising that the Boulders are closed.

Our community is reminded that now is not the time for road trips, recreation
and holidays.

People must stay at home unless there is an essential need for them to go out.

9 April 2020




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