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Two men rescued by Coastguard

MARYKE PENMAN
Last updated 11:40 04/02/2013

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Two men clutching the hull of their capsized boat were rescued by the Coastguard off Browns Bay beach yesterday.

The Coastguard vessel North Shore Rescue was dispatched at around 8.30am to an overturned boat around 370m off Browns Bay beach.

Two middle aged men and one male teenager had fallen victim to heavy winds and high seas whilst boating in the area.

The weather forecast was for north-east winds of between 15 and 20 knots.

When the boat capsized one passenger swam to a nearby cliff for safety whilst the remaining two were left holding onto the upturned vessel.

Coastguard duty officer Tony Winyard says none were wearing life jackets.

All three passengers showed signs of mild hypothermia but did not require further medical attention.

Their vessel was towed ashore and de-watered.

Coastguard marketing and funding manager Georgie Smith says it is important that all boaties not only carry life jackets, but wear them when out on the water.

"It is the same as putting on a seatbelt in a car. A life jacket will save your life."

Police have issued a warning of the dangers of small vessels and easterly winds in the Browns Bay area.

North Shore Police area commander Inspector Les Paterson says there is some debate as to whether New Zealanders should have to abide by the stricter Australian rules that require life jackets be worn in most circumstances of recreational boating.

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