CoastguardMana Saving Lives at Sea

Yachties rescued as yacht sinks off Plimmerton after hitting rocks

Posted by Mark Presling
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Operation Details
Thu, 18/03/2010 - 21:45 - Fri, 19/03/2010 - 00:30
Operation Type: 
People Assisted: 

A Wellington couple aged in their 70's are lucky to be alive after their 25 foot yacht hit rocks off Plimmerton Beach near Wellington on Thursday night.

The couple phoned Police on 111 from a cell phone at approximately 9.45pm after their boat hit rocks a few hundred metres off shore; losing power and taking on water.

The Police, Westpac Rescue Helicopter and Coastguard were all sent to the aid of the couple, who managed to climb into a small dinghy (in choppy conditions) as their boat sank beneath them.

The couple remained calm and kept Police appraised of their location and the sea conditions - whilst donning their lifejackets and firing flares to assist their rescuers to locate them in the dark.

They were brought aboard a Mana Coastguard vessel just as their boat sank in approximately 22 metres of water. The Westpac Rescue helicopter was also present at the scene with a winch crew to extract them from the water if required.

Once ashore, they were checked by Ambulance staff and were able to return home.

Their boat and their small dinghy were both lost during the ordeal, and Police expect them (or debris from them) to wash ashore in the next few days.


  • Good result with two people picked up by Coastguard Mana's rescue vessel CRV Pelorus just as the yacht was about to go under.
  • Westpac Rescue assisted and spotted a flashing light which Pelorus picked up - it was the EPIRB that RCCNZ had picked up a signal from and asked Pelorus to return it to land and turn it off.
  • An ambulance was called in to Plimmerton Boating Club to check the patients over once returned ashore by Pelorus. Westpac Rescue also landed to check them out before heading back to base.


Yacht sinking location 41° 4' 5.1348" S, 174° 50' 1.2444" E
EPIRB recovery location 41° 4' 18.4116" S, 174° 49' 38.9964" E
Victim drop-off location 41° 4' 29.0532" S, 174° 51' 20.268" E
Vessel Details
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