The lives of Kaikoura's wharf users are being put in danger by repeated thefts of essential life-saving equipment.
Kaikoura District Council asset manager Gallo Saidy would like to hear from anyone who knows about the recent "acts of stupidity".
Mr Saidy said lifebuoys and ropes have been targeted by "mindless" thieves for the past few months.
Despite council's best efforts to ensure water safety around the wharves, the replacements have also been stolen.
"I just cannot understand why people would do this – how would they feel if someone drowned as a result of their stupidity?"
It is only a matter of months since 54-year-old Nelson man Robert Murray Bull (also known as Robert Murray Chapman) drowned after falling from the wharf during a night-time fishing trip. Mr Saidy said this should have been a warning to anyone wanting to remove the equipment to leave it alone.
"This equipment is there for the safety of all wharf users. Not only is there a cost to the council and therefore the ratepayer to replace stolen property, but it really could make the difference between life and death."
The equipment at the wharf was put there after Mr Bull died.
The lifebuoy were made available following a request from a friend of Mr Bull.
- Kaikoura Star