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The search for a 13-year-old missing after a boating incident in Kawakawa Bay off Auckland again highlights the importance of simple safety preparations when boating, Maritime New Zealand says.
Four people were aboard a 4m runabout when it capsized at around noon yesterday, but the alarm was not raised until midnight and three men not found until eight hours later. A 13-year-old boy remains missing.
MNZ Deputy Director Lindsay Sturt said it appears the group had no means of communication and were not wearing lifejackets.
The incident contrasts with two other incidents in the last week:
“We sympathise with the family in what is an extremely difficult time, and we are hoping for a positive outcome to the search, but it appears this situation could so easily have been avoided,” Mr Sturt said.
“These men were not wearing lifejackets and it appears they had no means of raising the alarm when they got into trouble – that means they spent 12 hours in the water even before a search began, in the middle of the night.
“We hear of rescues every week from around the country and almost, without exception, when people take simple steps to prepare for boating trips, the outcomes are positive.”