Kurnell man jetskis wife through floods, oil spill for girls’ weekend


After an oil leak prevented his wife from getting to the airport, a Sydney husband got around Sydney’s flooded roads with a little help from their jetski.

A Kurnell man has saved his wife’s girls’ weekend despite an oil spill and flood waters blocking roads to the airport.

On Thursday morning, an Ampol Australia waste water treatment plant overflowed due to heavy rainfall, which caused the water to be contaminated with a dark black, hydrocarbon substance. Although the mixture wasn’t flammable due to the heavy rains, the NSW SES closed the roads around the Kurnell area.

Unfortunately, it coincided with a weekend girls’ trip to Byron Bay which Kurnell resident, Naomi Iredale had planned with her four friends.

Speaking to news.com.au, Ms Iredale says she had contemplated multiple escape routes but none seemed feasible.

“I went and waited in my car for half an hour because I thought maybe the police will open the road but they didn’t,” she said, calling from Lennox Head, near Byron Bay.

However, she was determined to make her holiday.

“There was no way I was missing out. I have three children and I’ve been waiting for this since January. I needed to go,” she laughed.

Tasked with driving the girl’s group to the airport, owner of the Gymea-based Shire Connect Limousines, Paul Bartolo said Ms Iredale’s friends had ran through multiple scenarios to ensure their friend would make the flight to Byron Bay.

“At one stage they were trying to find alternative means like getting a four-wheel drive to go around the sand dunes but that was impossible because the dunes are so steep and it was pelting down with rain,” he says, speaking to news.com.au.

Another plan was to ferry Ms Iredale in a tinny boat, however this proved impossible due to strong currents.

“As we were travelling towards the airport, one of the girls was communicating to (Ms Iredale) when she goes: ‘Paul, is there any way we can stop at Brighton Le Sands so we can pick up out friend?”

Despite the road closures, Ms Iredale’s husband Mat managed to take his wife from Kurnell to Brighton Le Sands, traversing Botany Bay.

Dressed in Kathmandu wet weather gear the couple bought for their honeymoon in Africa, Ms Iredale braved the 15 minute jetski trip to Brighton Le Sands. She jokes that while her husband got “smashed” by the waves – and even lost his phone – she remained relatively dry.

“I was so covered up. I had one eye hearing over my husband’s shoulder and he copped all of it,” she said.

Now successfully on day two of her holiday, Ms Iredale jokingly says that the “universe aligned”.

“It all worked out in the end,” she jokes.

“My girlfriends and Paul the limo driver were waiting at Brighton. I stripped off my wet weather gear and threw my clothes to my beautiful husband and Paul had a blanket waiting for me so I could dry my feet and we got to the airport.

“There was no traffic, we quickly got to the airport and then we just sailed through security and we got on the plane.”

Originally published as Kurnell man jetskis wife through floods, oil spill for girls’ weekend



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