Two rescued off coast of Niue

31 July 2019

Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand (RCCNZ) has overseen the rescue of two people from a catamaran that grounded off Niue’s eastern coast.

At 3am yesterday morning, RCCNZ received a distress beacon alert registered to an Australian catamaran.

RCCNZ alerted the local Niuean authorities and local SAR Police were requested to investigate while Niue Maritime Radio and Taupo Maritime Radio commenced distress broadcasts. At daybreak, a local fisherman located the catamaran aground on the reef on the eastern side of Niue.

A rescue boat presented to Niue by New Zealand’s Pacific Maritime Safety Programme in 2017 was tasked to facilitate the rescue however the couple were able to get themselves to shore, where they were met by the Police and taken to Alofi for hospital treatment.

RCCNZ Search and Rescue Officer Dougal Cockerell said “We always advise mariners to carry two types of reliable emergency communications when out on the water. Given the catamaran’s remote location, this couple had the right communications equipment on board and were able to indicate their distress via their EPIRB”

“RCCNZ covers one of the largest search and rescue areas in the world. Our search and rescue region extends from the mid-Tasman Sea, halfway to Chile, and from the South Pole, almost up to the Equator so good communications are essential”

Map of Niue
Photo credit: Maritime NZ
Location of Niue, and site of grounded catamaran, within RCCNZ’s search and rescue area

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