Ex-HMAS Brisbane Double Dive
- Duration: 5 Hours (approx.)
- Location: Mooloolaba, QLD
On your arrival to Sunreef, we will check you in and see that your gear is organized, whether you prefer one of our staff to set up for you, or you would like to do it for yourself. We'll then depart out to the Ex-HMAS Brisbane. Each diver will be given a thorough briefing about the dive as the boat traverses the calm waters of the Mooloolah River. Once the boat is at the wreck and moored, the crew will help get divers into the water. The dive will last for 50 minutes, or as soon as a diver or their buddy reaches 50 bar, whichever comes first. The divers then return to the shop, where gear is washed for you.
The Ex-HMAS Brisbane dive site
Dive one the world's best wreck sites, the Ex-HMAS Brisbane, a decommissioned guided missile destroyer. Located just 2.9 nautical miles offshore which makes it an easy venture out and is available to dive all year round.
Sunreef has exclusive use of the two midship moorings, making for two leisurely dives that allow divers to comfortably and safely visit the entire wreck.
Explore the outside of the wreck and encounter an abundance of local aquatic sea life that inhabits her. Discover the depths of her hull, enter the engine room or even visit the control room where her kill switches are still intact.
The vessel now serves as a world-class artificial reef and diving site. She has attracted divers from all over the world. Divers from Open Water level, to Divemaster, Instructors, dive shop owners and ex-servicemen who served on the HMAS Brisbane all sing the praises of this great wreck dive; She seems to be in the perfect diving spot. Sitting bolt upright the Ex-HMAS Brisbane has 15 metres of water over her forward decks and 18 metres over her stern. Consistently good water clarity and minimal swell makes for great diving. Just one dive on the Ex-HMAS Brisbane, and you readily understand why Sunreef is privileged to have been issued a licence by the Environment Protection Agency of the Queensland Government to conduct dive trips on the former HMAS Brisbane. The dive is phenomenal. There is certainly a lot of ship to see.
Just cruising around the outside, its sheer size makes it an awesome sight. Water temperatures range from 17C in winter to a summer high of 27C. Visibility averages around 15 metres but up to 20 metres or more is not uncommon. Environmental studies commissioned by the Environmental Protection Agency and conducted by scientists from the University of the Sunshine Coast and Queensland Museum confirms the diversity of marine life that has made the Brisbane home.
Local inhabitants include a large bull & eagle rays, angler fish, lionfish, blennies, nudibranchs, sea hares, squid and a school of juvenile red emperor and snapper. Other visitors include a shovelled nose rays, greasy cod and eagle rays. An octopus has made a home in a pyrotechnic tube on the deck. A resident school of predatory yellow tailed kingfish now ‘buzz’ the schools of of bait fish that surround the Ex-HMAS Brisbane. Up to 10 huge Queensland grouper have been seen at one time off the bow of the ship. A turtle has taken up residency on the aft funnel and eagle rays cruise between the 2 funnels. There’s also a huge amount of soft corals to be seen and hard corals are really getting established as well.
History of the vessel
The vessel: Commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy in 1967, the HMAS Brisbane was a 133 metre Charles F Adams Class DDG guided missile destroyer of approx 5000 tons. The HMAS Brisbane served Australia faithfully for 34 years, till she was decommissioned in 2001. She served in both the Vietnam and Gulf War and assisted on many humanitarian missions such as in Darwin in 1974, after cyclone Tracy.
Her new life: In January 2003, the Queensland Government agreed to accept the decommissioned HMAS Brisbane from the Commonwealth Government for sinking off the Sunshine Coast as an artificial reef and dive site.
The scuttling: After extensive and careful preparation, the ship was towed for its last journey to the Sunshine Coast. With the expertise of a crew who had extensive experience in scuttling ships for artificial reefs, explosives were carefully positioned in specially made wooden frames hard against the inside skin of the ship, below the waterline. On the 31st of July 2005, at a site 2.9 nautical miles east of Mudjimba Island off the Sunshine Coast, these explosives were detonated and in 2 minutes and 10 seconds, the former HMAS Brisbane was on the bottom in 28 metres of water.
Reminder for divers:Please note you will be required to fill out a Divers Statement after booking. This is to be filled out one time only. If you answer "yes" to taking medication (other than contraception and malaria medication), having an injury or illness that may affect your ability to dive, you will need doctors clearance before diving with us. If you are pregnant/trying to become pregnant, you cannot dive.
As with all dives, the night dive is subject to weather, and we will send out an email and text the day before at 3:30 pm to confirm the trip and its departure time.
Please note if you have not dived in the last 2 years you will be required to complete a Scuba Review/Refresher course before you can participate in any diving activities.
These can be arranged on most days at set times provided we have at least 3 days notice. Please contact us on 07 5444 5656 for more information.
This is also in open water and we suggest that you look into seasickness medication to minimize the chance of it impacting your trip.