The discovery of apparent human remains at far north Queensland’s Mossman Gorge continues a grim history at the popular swimming spot.
The suspected human leg bone, discovered by tourists who alerted police, has been linked to a 54-year-old Victoria woman missing since January.
Forensic testing is still ongoing, however the discovery could be a turning point in the investigation into the woman’s disappearance when she went swimming in turbulent waters at the site.
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The woman, a tourist, failed to resurface after being seen in distress by onlookers.
The incident prompted visitors to highlight the well-known safety concerns at the site.
“When we visited late last year, we were strongly advised against swimming, and that was at the end of the dry season,” one person commented on a Facebook post by Queensland police at the time.
Human remains discovered in far north Queensland continues grisly trend of deaths at tourist hotspot Credit: AAP
Another said: “Sad to say it appears that many people do not read warning signs at these places, including beaches and other recreation areas.”
“It’s so sad. We were there yesterday and so many people ignored the don’t swim signs,” said a third commenter.
The missing Victorian woman’s identity has not been disclosed by police.
If the remains are confirmed to be her, it would mark the third death at Mossman Gorge since 2003.
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After the drowning of a Taiwanese tourist, Che-Wei Su in 2014, a coroner’s report made recommendations for safety upgrades for the site.
‘The Mossman Gorge is an unpredictable and inherently dangerous waterway and the danger increases in the frequent times of high rainfall when flash flooding can result,” Coroner Jane Bentley said.
A 20-year-old US student drowned there in 2003, while Bentley noted in her report nine years ago that there had been 31 incidents of people needing rescuing at the site.
The Devil’s Pool at Babinda south of Cairns has also been an accident hotspot for swimmers.
A Cairns Regional Council safety review into the waterhole was conducted in January this year.
The report noted 21 recorded deaths since 1916, with three occurring between 2020 and 2021.
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