A 51-year-old man is dead and a woman is in critical condition after a boating accident in Hawke's Bay.
The jet boat was on the Ngaruroro river, west of Hastings, at about midday today when the pilot lost control, hitting willow trees on the bank, said police senior sergeant Marc Clausen.
The pilot, from New Plymouth, was struck by a branch and killed instantly, one woman was critically injured and three others in the boat had minor injuries.
The woman was flown to Hawke's Bay Regional Hospital by helicopter and the other three were taken by road ambulance.
Clausen said the jet boat was the last in a group of three - two of the boats were at a rest stop waiting for the third to turn up when they realised something was wrong.
The boat backtracked, saw the third had crashed, and called emergency services.
All of those on the boats were wearing lifejackets.
The circumstances of the crash will be investigated by the Maritime Safety Authority and police, and the death will be referred to the Coroner.
- Fairfax Media