Tas boating tragedy hits tight-knit town

The loss of three friends in a boating tragedy has been felt deeply in Wynyard, northwest Tasmania.
The loss of three friends in a boating tragedy has been felt deeply in Wynyard, northwest Tasmania.

A young man who died on a boating trip with two friends off northwest Tasmania has been remembered for his beautiful heart and love of fishing.

Isaiah Dixon's body was formally identified by police on Thursday, a day after it was found washed ashore about 200m away from the body of friend Bree-Anna Thomas.

They had set out around midday on Monday in a 17-foot motorboat from the town of Wynyard with Thomas Courto, who search crews are still trying to find.

"They were planning on going out for a bit of a fun day," Isaiah's uncle John-Paul Dixon told reporters.

"(They) had a bit of a swim in front of a waterfall and sat on the beach, the three of them. It's just a tragedy."

Mr Dixon said Isaiah, 23, and Thomas, 26, grew up together.

"(I'll remember) their smiles and their outgoing nature. They loved to fish, loved to camp. They were just good boys," he said.

"(Isaiah) was a very special boy. He was an amazing worker and had a beautiful heart."

Air and sea search crews, plus people scouring the coastline on foot, have battled rough and cold conditions.

No trace of the white and yellow boat has been found. Authorities plan to continue searching over coming days and will utilise sonar technology on Monday.

Waratah-Wynyard mayor Robby Walsh said more than 100 people congregated at the Wynyard boat ramp for a vigil on Wednesday night.

Flowers and messages of support have been left at a park in the town.

Volunteers hit the water in their own vessels on Tuesday but have since been told by police to stand down due to the dangerous seas.

"I cried about 50 times on Tuesday," Mr Dixon said.

"If a person had a boat, it was in the water. If they had a plane, it was in the air. If they had a pair of boots, they were walking. I just can't thank everyone enough."

Mr Walsh, who knows several generations of the Dixon family, said the weather was so rough some seasoned boaties became seasick.

"It's a terrible situation. It'll never be forgotten," he told AAP.

"This is going to stay with the community for decades."

The boat was last spotted off Boat Harbour Beach to the west of Wynyard on Monday afternoon.

Mobiles belonging to the northwest trio have not returned a signal since around then.

Thursday's search efforts centred on the Fossil Bluff and Table Cape area, near where the bodies of Isaiah and Bree-Anna were found.

The boat was equipped with required safety equipment including flares, radio, EPIRB and flotation devices.

Isaiah held a boating licence, police have said, while the boat belonged to his father.

Australian Associated Press