You are currently viewing Body found in search for missing swimmer
A rahui is in place at Opoutere Beach. PHOTO: TCDC/FB

Body found in search for missing swimmer

Police advised on Saturday that a body was located in the water near Opoutere Beach, north of Whangamatā, after a search and rescue operation for a missing swimmer commenced on January 18.
The swimmer was part of a family group of seven who got into difficulty in the water.
One other person drowned in the incident on Wednesday.
Police were alerted about 1.30pm, following the discovery by a member of the public near Slipper Island/Whakahau.
Formal identification has yet to take place, and the death will be referred to the Coroner.
Police said the search and rescue operation has now concluded, and thanked all those involved in the operation “including our partner agencies, Surf Life Saving New Zealand, NZ Coastguard, LandSAR, FENZ, and the Royal New Zealand Navy”.
Earlier, a rāhui was put in place over Ōpoutere Beach, the Wharekawa Harbour and the river.
The rāhui places a restriction on recreational activities, such as swimming, surfing, boating, fishing and shellfish collection on the beach, harbour and river.
In a post to Facebook, Thames-Coromandel District Council said a rāhui (physical and spiritual protection mechanism) sets a temporary prohibition in order to acknowledge the death and to express sympathy to the whānau of the deceased.
“It provides time for tapu (sacredness) to dissipate following the fatalities, allowing time for healing and recovery of the natural elements of place as well as the people, in particular, the grieving whānau.”
The rāhui was put in pace in a ceremony performed by a kaumatua with those attending including Mayor Len Salt and council’s Cultural Navigator Frank Thorne.
The rāhui will remain in place until further notice.