Associate Editor

Australia’s Gold Coast has been lighting up of late, apparently to the delight of jet ski owners and tow-in surfers across the region. The Gold Coast Bulletin reports that breaks have turned into step-off bonanzas with “dozens of jet ski tow-in surfers,” invading lineups. Just ask Chris Hemsworth.


At Currumbin Alley, though, 16-year-old photog Luke Workman captured this nightmarish photo sequence demonstrating what happens when a tow-in goes completely awry.

“Everyone was just amazed and in shock after they fell, he got sucked backward into the wave while his mate was in the barrel,” Workman told the Gold Coast Bulletin. “They were on one of the smaller waves that came through as well.”

Both the driver and the surfer came out of the incident unscathed and managed to get back on the ski and keep surfing.

Skis are regulated by a Maritime Safety Queensland tow-in surfing code of conduct that stipulates they’re not to be used within 200 meters of paddle surfers.

After the incident, water police sent a patrol to the scene, but chose not to enforce exclusionary zones.


“Police did get down there … there were only two or three jet skis out,” water police Senior Sargeant Kim Hill told the Gold Coast Bulletin.

His response to the incident itself was particularly nonchalant. “When it’s big like that they shouldn’t be doing it,” Young said.


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