A word of warning from the Police Maritime Support Unit to owners of runabouts built in the last 20 to 40 years â€“ have the hull carefully checked for rotting wood by someone with good knowledge of marine safety and boat building.
Senior Sergeant Martin Paget said the boat being used by 40 year-old deceased recreational fisher Brett Barson and his companion off the coast of Waiheke Island last evening, was recovered by the Police launch Deodar this morning and towed from near the Noisies to Okahu Bay.
"While it seems the boat has been well looked after and maintained in good condition, it could be up to 40 years old and had a hidden weakness in the hull â€“ rot - which seems to have given way, contributing to the craft sinking as it did," Mr Paget said.
"I would urge all owners and/or operators of craft like the one Mr Barson was in, to inspect the hull carefully â€“ from inside and out â€“ to ensure itâ€™s as strong as it should be."
Mr Paget said the Police investigation into the incident that happened at about 7.30pm last night would be carried out in conjunction with the Maritime Safety Authority.
Issued by Noreen Hegarty
Auckland City Police Communications Manager
Ph 09 302 6947 or 0274-951-589