Rowers help free stranded jet boaters
Three jet boaters were saved a long wait on a sandbank in the middle of the Oreti River on Tuesday night thanks to the efforts of the Waihopai Rowing Club.
The boaties were left high and dry in the middle of the river near the rowing club after they ran aground.
Waihopai Rowing Club president Terry Reeves said the men were freed from their predicament when members of the club and several competitors training for the upcoming Corporate Eights went to their rescue.
Mr Reeves said the club members and corporate rowers jumped aboard a couple of coaches' boats when the alarm was raised and went out to the men stranded on the sand bank.
"There were about eight of us and we managed to eventually shunt the boat 30 metres and off the bank. It was heavy as b....y," he said.
The section of the Oreti River where the jet boat was stranded was a notorious stretch of water, Mr Reeves said.
"It is treacherous at that spot with the huge sand bank in the middle and a couple of channels running down its side. It can be tricky with the exposed sand bank growing every minute when the tide goes down."
Senior Sergeant Dave Raynes, of Invercargill, said police were called to the Oreti River at about 7pm when a jet boat got stuck on the mud flat.
However, the rowing club was able to help free the men.
Mr Raynes said the only concerns police had were the men in the boat did not have an anchor or working mobile phones.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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