A rescue mission is still a day away from reaching a seriously ill Australian in the Antarctic

The Aurora Australis. Image: Alison Kohout

The Australian icebreaker ship, Aurora Australis, is making good progress towards Davis station to retrieve a seriously ill expeditioner.

The man is in a serious but stable condition and is under the care of the station doctor.

Robb Clifton, Australian Antarctic Division operations manager, said the Aurora Australis is expected to reach Davis harbour about lunchtime Saturday.

The ship is about 230 nautical miles from Davis and, with the right ice and weather conditions, it will reach the station within 24 hours.

The patient will be transferred by helicopter to the medical facility on the ship.

Clifton says it’s hoped the ship will be ready to sail by Monday night after refueling. It will then take about two weeks to return to Hobart.

The icebreaker turned back to David yesterday, two days after its last supply run for the season, to pick up the sick man.

The nature of the illness hasn’t been released.

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