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Gulf Harbour incident: ‘Be prepared out on the water this Easter weekend’ – police

Easter Weekend Water safety news

Three people had a lucky escape when their boat sank near Gulf Harbour yesterday afternoon.

The trio were on their first trip out in the 5m fibreglass runabout when it began taking on water near Tiritiri-Matangi Island.

Police received a 111 call shortly before 3pm, reporting that the boat was sinking.

Fortunately, Police were able to identify their location through their cellphone GPS.

Eagle and Police maritime units deployed to the area, together with volunteers on three Coastguard vessels, and Eagle located the three occupants in the water, all of whom were wearing life jackets.

Eagle directed Coastguard Howick to the trio, who retrieved them from the water.

They were all taken to hospital, one of them in a serious condition from cold exposure.

Inspector Martin Brown of Tāmaki Makaurau Police says it is fortunate the three were wearing life jackets, and they had a good form of communication which enabled Police to pinpoint their location.

“This is a really good example of how anything can happen when you’re out on the water.

“It’s currently unclear what caused the boat to sink, and it’s safe to say the occupants certainly weren’t expecting it to happen.

“Nevertheless they were prepared and emergency services were able to come to the rescue.”

This example serves as a good reminder for anyone heading out on the water over Easter weekend.

  • Always wear your life jacket
  • Take two waterproof ways to call for help
  • Check the marine weather forecast
  • Avoid alcohol
  • Be a responsible skipper

Image credit: Ron Lach

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