Swimmer missing off Manawatu beach

SEA SEARCH: Surf lifesavers at Himatangi Beach.
SEA SEARCH: Surf lifesavers at Himatangi Beach.

A search has been launched off Himatangi Beach after a 27-year-old swimmer went missing this afternoon.

Police communications acting inspector Mike Coleman said the swimmer was reported missing about 2.45pm.

Search and Rescue staff are still out looking for the swimmer with the aid of Foxton Surf Lifesaving members and Manawatu Coast Guard.

Nine IRBs of surf life savers and the Manawatu coastguard are currently in the water after resuming their search at 7.30pm following a dinner break. They are among 60 searchers looking for the missing man.

LandSAR volunteer Tony Groome said searchers were covering an area of two to three nautical miles in both directions from the point where the man was last seen, off the south end of the beach.

The man was swimming a considerable distance down the beach from the surf life saver flagged area. While searchers continue to scour the water, members of the man's party are sitting in vigil on the dunes.

Manawatu Standard