Last updated: December 23, 2009

Weather: Sydney 21°C - 29°C . Mostly fine.

Hospital ship Centaur discovered off Queensland coast

SHIPWRECK hunters have found the hospital ship Centaur which was torpedoed without warning in 1943 off the Queensland coast, killing 268 people.

Search director David Mearns has advised government officials of the exact location of the wreck and said filming of the wreck would begin in January.

Acting Prime Minister Julia Gillard said Australians and relatives of those who had been aboard the ship were grateful for the find.

"The discovery of the AHS Centaur will ensure all Australians know and commemorate the 268 brave nurses and crew who died in the service of their nation," Ms Gillard said.

"I hope by locating the final resting place of the AHS Centaur, the family and friends of those men and women who were tragically lost find some resolution."

The AHS Centaur was sunk by a Japanese submarine on 14 May, 1943 about 50 nautical miles east north-east of Brisbane. Of the 332 persons on board, only 64 survived.

The search crew has undertaken five high-resolution sonar tracklines over the target site, and is now conducting a further run to obtain a clearer picture of the wreck.

Queensland premier Anna Bligh said it was a time of reflection.

"It is timely to take a moment to remember those lives lost on that tragic day in 1943, and the devastating effect this has had on their families," Ms Bligh said.

"This morning's confirmation that the wreck has been found will hopefully provide some peace to the loved ones of those killed."

"We will now use this momentum to finish this task and film the wreck site.

"In early January, a remotely operated submersible vehicle equipped with a high-definition camera will collect high quality imagery of the wreck and the surrounding area."

Mr Mearns said the wreck is located approximately 30 nautical miles due east of the southern tip of Moreton Island (27 deg 16.98 South, 153 deg 59.22 East) at a depth of 2,059 metres.

The Australian and Queensland governments jointly committed $4 million to the search and officers from the Department of Defence and the Department of Premier and Cabinet provided oversight and technical assistance to the project.

The Environment

environment

THE future of our environmental health becomes more urgent while the worst drought on record wipes billions from the economy and leaves farmers in despair.

Hail Mary

Mary Mackillop

MARY MacKillop set to become Australia's first saint.

Naomi Mawson Mother Nature Australia

Naomi Mawson baby photo

The Naomi Mawson Mother Nature Australia Collection features sleeping babies being cared for by M...

Easy to Extravagant Xmas Gifts

Xmas Gifts - Baubles

Go to Santa's workshop before skydiving with jolly Kris Kringle with gift ideas to fill every Chr...

'Biblical downpour' floods England

English villages underwater

TORRENTIAL rains of "biblical proportions" have submerged towns in northwest England.

Towels at Bondi

Cancer Council tanning Sydney

1700 beach towels bearing the chalk outline of bodies were laid out on sands of Bondi Beach in Sy...

World-eye view

World-eye view - November 8, 2009

FROM conjoined twins to a flock of geese, we take a look at the best pictures of the week.

Prev

1 of 6

Next

Inside news.com.au

Fire threat forces evacuations

Firetruck

RESIDENTS told to flee as cyclone triggers a "catastrophic" fire risk and leaves a trail of destruction.

NAB in spotlight over 'Berlusconi Bonds'

NAB

BANK analysts have questioned NAB on its decision to hold $12.7 billion worth of bonds issued by Italy's debt-laden Government.

Gen Y locked out of home ownership

Homes

THE tendency of Gen Ys to hop from job to job is locking them out of the mortgage market.

Lily Allen baby loss trauma

Lily Allen

THE British singer says she didn’t begin dealing with her miscarriage until the baby's due date.

Fight erupts between rejected passengers

Delta

POLICE officers were called to a US airport after a fight broke out between passengers who were booted from an overbooked flight.