ZB

Water rescue: Mystery jet-ski hero saves boaties tipped on Raglan Bar

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 28 Dec 2021, 4:14pm
Coastguard New Zealand wants to thank a member of the public who saved two boaties who tipped on the Raglan Bar today. Photo / NZME
Coastguard New Zealand wants to thank a member of the public who saved two boaties who tipped on the Raglan Bar today. Photo / NZME

Water rescue: Mystery jet-ski hero saves boaties tipped on Raglan Bar

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 28 Dec 2021, 4:14pm

Coastguard New Zealand is sending its thanks to an unknown jet-skier who saved two boaties from a potentially life-threatening situation on the Raglan Bar. 

About 9am today, the bar crossing alarm sounded in the Coastguard Operations Centre - alerting the team to a vessel overdue on the Raglan Bar. 

Shortly after, a member of the public reported sighting a vessel upside down on the harbour bar with three people in the water. 

Raglan Volunteer Coastguard responded together with the local Surf Lifesaving Club and rescued one person, while the other two were taken to shore by a person operating a yellow jet-ski. 

Fortunately, the boaties were wearing lifejackets and had logged a bar crossing report so Coastguard could assist in case something went amiss. 

In its Facebook post, Coastguard NZ expressed gratitude to the jet-skier and hoped they would get in touch. 

"Big thanks to the member of the public on the yellow jet ski! If you're reading this we'd love to hear from you." 

All three boaties had returned home to whānau this afternoon. Their vessel would be retrieved once conditions calmed. 

It was a rare piece of good news after a terrible run of fatal water tragedies this month. 

December has one of the worst drowning rates of the year, with 12 deaths reported already - three incidents were at North Island beaches on Boxing Day alone. 

Water Safety New Zealand chief executive Daniel Gerrard said the numbers so far this month were horrendous. 

"We had really low drowning rates over lockdowns and now it seems like we're trying to make up for that, unfortunately," he said. 

Gerrard urged people to follow the old rule, "if in doubt, stay out". 

"That could be you heading out in a boat to go fishing with your mates and actually, the conditions are a bit dodgy, [and you] think maybe you shouldn't go, right through to 'oh, the surf looks OK but it's actually probably bigger than I can handle, maybe I'll stay out today'." 

He said everyone should know their limits in water and be mindful of conditions, especially at the beach. 

"If you are at the beach, you should swim between the flags and if anyone is unsure of the conditions, you should chat to a lifeguard before going into the water." 

- by Adam Pearse, NZ Herald