Wide Bay ready to battle Tasmanians over HMAS Tobruk

THE Bundaberg region has been asked to put up a fight against Tasmania to win the HMAS Tobruk for Wide Bay.

The region wants the HMAS Tobruk, which was decommissioned in July last year, to be scuttled off the coast as a recreational diving wreck at a 34m-deep site between Hervey Bay and Bundaberg.

It's a move that could bring millions of new tourist dollars to the area.

Organisers of the Tasmanian bid have ramped up their campaig n and challenged Wide Bay to get more likes on their Facebook page.

Scott Rowe, a member of the Regional Dive Wreck Advisory group, said they needed regional support to combat Tasmania's bid.

"Bundy's support is crucial to the success of the Wide Bay bid," Mr Rowe said.

He is urging Bundaberg people to go to the Facebook page HMAS Tobruk Military Dive Experience and like it to show the authorities we really want it here.

He said if the ship was scuttled here it would inject millions into the economy, just like the HMAS Brisbane in Mooloolaba.

Mike McKinnon, operations manager of Scuba World at Mooloolaba - one of two providers on the Sunshine Coast offering tours of HMAS Brisbane - said the prospect of a new wreck to explore was great news.

"When the HMAS Brisbane wreck came, the Sunshine Coast was put on the map," he said.

"We went from taking 400 to 500 divers out a year to 4000 to 5000."

Mr Rowe said divers spent on average $800 a day and the addition of Tobruk would create a $4 million return to the Queensland economy each year.

"You could dive the Tobruk one day and the Brisbane the next."

The Tobruk is in Sydney and a decision on her final resting place may be made by the Federal Government within months.

Topics:  bundaberg diving hmas tobruk sink tourism

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