Divers continue search for crayfisherman

Last updated 17:19 12/01/2013

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Police divers have still found no sign of an elderly man missing off the Wairarapa coast.

A 72-year-old man, believed to have been blown out to sea at Sandy Bay, near Te Awaiti, has been missing since Thursday morning, when he went to check his crayfish pot in a small inflatable dinghy.

Search and rescue mission coordinator Keith Allen said the search effort will be reviewed overnight to reach a decision on the next stage of the search.

A fisherman alerted police to an empty car, boat trailer and quad bike on Thursday night.

An extensive 13-hour search by an Air Force Orion yesterday located the 2 metre by 3m dinghy 68 kilometres offshore.

A helicopter resumed the search this morning, but as there were no sightings of the man the air search was called off, a Rescue Coordination Centre spokeswoman said.

The police dive squad resumed searching Sandy Bay this morning, progressively widening their search around the area near the man's crayfish pot at the mouth of the bay.

The man's dog, which he took with him on the boat, was found on the beach yesterday morning after having swam back to shore.

The man was known to be wearing a wetsuit and life jacket.

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