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Surfer plucked from rocks, winched to safety at Sumner Beach

Author
NZ Herald ,
Publish Date
Tue, 13 Sep 2022, 9:24am

Surfer plucked from rocks, winched to safety at Sumner Beach

Author
NZ Herald ,
Publish Date
Tue, 13 Sep 2022, 9:24am

A surfer has been airlifted off the rocks at Sumner Beach after being pulled out to sea by a strong rip this morning.

Sam Jones told the Herald he was out surfing with his friend at around 7.30am when the friend started to get pulled out to sea.

"I swam over to him and tried to get him but it was too strong."

Jones was forced to leave his friend and head to shore to call for help. Ambulances, police and a rescue helicopter responded.

Witness Lesley Murdoch said she understood the surfer in trouble was a Japanese international student – a competent swimmer but not an experienced surfer.

"You talk to the regulars here [at Sumner] and they know when they can and can't surf and they would not be surfing here."

Murdoch said the surfer had managed to get himself up on to rocks where there is a seal colony, which is where he was dramatically airlifted from.

"He was safe, but harder to rescue," Murdoch told the Herald.

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