A speedy response from the Maketu Coastguard saved two people who were thrown into the sea when their boat capsized.
The accident occurred just before 6.45am on Saturday morning, at the Kaituna Cut.
Maketu Coastguard president Shane Beech says the two people, a man and a woman, launched their boat from the Bell Road boat ramp, and had been travelling down the Kaituna River.
“They reached the entrance and misjudged the cut, and were rolled by a wave,” he says.
“There’s quite a few fishermen down there, and one of them contacted police, who contacted us. It’s quite common for fishermen to see these kinds of accidents unfold right in front of them.”
He says it took the coastguard 15 minutes from receiving the call to reach the people in the water, who he says were ‘probably a bit hypothermic with the cold and shock’, but were otherwise uninjured.
The boat itself eventually washed up against the shore, and thanks to the assistance of a local farmer and his tractor, the boat was able to be towed up onto the beach.
The Kaituna Cut is notorious for contributing to boating accidents in the area, which is why the local coastguard runs sessions on how to successfully navigate the bar.
“These people had the right gear and had done a trip report to notify coastguard. They did everything right – it was just one of those unfortunate things.”