7 Oct 2003

Three missing Tokelauan teenagers found

8:23 am on 7 October 2003

Searchers who rescued three Tokelauan teenagers who had been adrift in a dingy in the Pacific say they are lucky to be alive.

The boys, aged between 13 and 15, had been missing from the Atafu atoll in the Tokelau Islands since Saturday.

John Seward, from New Zealand's National Search and Rescue Co-ordination Centre, says an Airforce Orion spotted the trio, and a supply boat picked them up late last night.

He says the teenagers had a lucky escape as the area of sea to be searched was growing and they had no safety gear at all.