Let’s help keep Waikawa Beach waters safe

Waikawa Beach is a great spot for fun and fishing in the river and sea, but check conditions and take a few safety precautions. We have info and links.

Lifejacket info from Maritime NZ.

Plenty of people enjoy Waikawa Beach for its opportunities for fishing, kayaking and generally enjoying the water, especially over summer.We love our fun in the sun.

But in the last couple of years there have been 3 unfortunate drownings very close to home, and it’s a good reminder to us to take care in and around the water.

Lifejacket info from Maritime NZ.
Lifejacket info from Maritime NZ.

On 17 January 2015 a fisherman died only 100 metres or so off Waikawa Beach — a sad event.

The news item on Stuff, Keen fisherman not wearing lifejacket during fatal boat trip says:

Thomas Michael Angove, also known as Spike, died on January 17, 2015, after his inflatable dinghy capsized off the coast of Waikawa Beach …

He and his family went to Waikawa Beach just after low tide. Although the weather was good, the sea was extremely rough with 2- to 3-metre swells. …

The dinghy could not get enough speed to keep up with the waves and was flipped by a wave from behind.

It flipped back-over-front, with both men thrown forwards. …

“Mr Angove was not wearing a life jacket, which significantly undermined the chances of surviving a capsize.”

In another unfortunate nearby incident on 23 January 2017 two men drowned at the mouth of the Otaki River after a rafting incident went wrong.

Police release names of two men drowned at mouth of Otaki River, on Kapiti Coast says:

The men were the focus of an extensive rescue operation off the coast near the river mouth after the small inflatable raft they were on capsized on the river, and they were sucked out to sea. …

“They were not wearing lifejackets. Indications are they entered the water when it was flowing fairly swiftly, about 500 metres upstream of the river mouth.”

Nicholson said the men were tipped out of the raft while on the river and washed into the sea. Searchers found the body of the first man off the beach, just south of the river mouth. …

Lifejackets might have made a difference, but given the rough conditions at the time, the men might still not have survived, Nicholson said.…

Water Safety New Zealand chief executive Jonty Mills said rivers could be particularly unpredictable and changeable, particularly after severe weather changes and at river mouths, and sailors could easily find themselves being pulled out to open water.

Here are some helpful resources for helping us keep Waikawa Beach waters safe and fun:

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