West Australian authorities have said could be more than 24 hours until three crew stranded on a damaged sailing boat over 30nm off the WA coastline in the Southern Ocean are back onshore.
Typical tuna vessel - now on its way to damaged sailing boat
A tuna boat was last night on its way to the stricken yacht, which is believed to be located offshore from Israelite Bay on WA's south-coast.
The three crew on the yacht sent out distress signals on Friday night after the vessel's engine and sail were both badly damaged in rough conditions..
Authorities say they are in contact with those on board the yacht and the tuna boat was expected to reach them overnight. It is not known whether the tuna vessel will be able to take the yacht in tow, or if it will have to be abandoned.
The yacht has not been identified.