Police name Wanaka man found after jetboat accident

GRANT BRYANT
Last updated 09:16 15/10/2012

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Wanaka searchers this morning pulled the submerged body of a man from a rugged river delta near the top of Lake Wanaka after a jetboating mishap last night.

The submerged body of 65-year-old Wanaka man Murray Austin Rivers was found snagged by a sunken willow tree about 150 metres from where the jetboat flipped.

A party of three were trying to negotiate the Wilkin and Makarora rivers in a 4.8m aluminium hulled jetboat yesterday evening, when it suffered engine failure.

The boat was being pushed and paddled by the occupants, who were trying to get it to a boat ramp at Wharf Creek on the Makarora River.

Wanaka police SAR coordinator Sergeant Aaron Nicholson said the boat flipped after hitting a gravel bar in rapids.

The body was recovered mid-morning, and next of kin have been informed by police.

The death has been referred to the coroner.

It appeared no life jackets were worn by the occupants of the jetboat, Mr Nicholson said.

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