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Hokitika: Missing Kayaker Located

New Zealand Police Alert 20:00 13-01-2008 Tasman

Location of incident: Hokitika

Incident Type: Missing Kayaker Located

On the 13th January 2008 at approximately 6.00am police were called regarding a stranded kayaker in the Hokitika River.

The 17yr old from Palmerston North was in the river yesterday with two others when his kayak was swept away by rising river levels, leaving him stranded.

His two friends chased the run-away kayak without success so decided to continue out and raise the alarm. They made it back last night, but it was too late to send a helicopter in.

The incident happened when the trio secured their boats above a section of river and walked down the sides to assess the rapid. Whilst doing this the river rose and swept one of the boats away.

The Greymouth Rescue helicopter was sent in this morning after low cloud lifted sufficiently, and hover loaded him from a rock in the river.

The kayaker was lucky with overnight conditions being relatively warm, he did not require medical attention.

Police are happy that he decided to stay put and not risk an unnecessary attempt at walking out.


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