Man dies after whale flips boat in Australia in 'absolute freak accident'

A man has been killed after a whale hit a boat off the coast of Sydney, Australia. 

Another man was injured and taken to hospital after the whale struck and flipped their small fishing boat.

It was "an absolute freak accident", state emergency services minister Jihad Dib said.

It was likely the whale came above the surface "causing the boat to tilt, ejecting both men", police said in a statement.

Police said one man was pulled unconscious from Sydney's Botany Bay and later died, while the other was taken to hospital in a stable condition.

"A whale has been involved, whoever would have thought that that would have occurred, it's terribly tragic," said New South Wales police minister Yasmin Catley.

The police did not say what kind of whale was involved.

Read more from Sky News:
France grapples with bed bug infestation
Duchess of York's former assistant murdered

Australia's extensive coastline hosts 10 large and 20 smaller species of whales.

Human deaths caused by whales are rare. However, last September five people died in New Zealand after their boat was overturned by a whale.

In June, eight Danish sailors had to be rescued after their boat capsized in the Pacific Ocean following a collision with one or two whales.