A man thought to have fallen off rocks into the sea on the Coromandel last night is now believed to have climbed to safety.
A witness saw the incident unfold at about 5pm last night at the south end of Whiritoa Beach, but did not see the man resurface, police said.
He called for help and a search was begun last night and continued today.
However, Whitiora head lifeguard Seth Rackhan said the search had been scaled back after another witness came forward reporting he had seen a man climbing up the rocks again.
Police earlier said the man, wearing a white shirt, had been seen on the rocks for an hour prior to entering the water but due to the first witness leaving the beach to call for help were unsure if he was still in the water.
Police had no reports of missing people.
- © Fairfax NZ News