An empty lifeboat recovered from Foveaux Strait appears to have been at sea for months.
Riverton Coastguard says the 10 metre fibreglass boat was found Monday morning, damaged and semi-submerged about 35 kms west of Riverton.
Coastguard spokesperson Noel Anderson says the boat posed a major shipping hazard.
It was recovered with some difficulty and has been towed back to the Riverton coast.
Mr Anderson says a name on the boat showed it had come from a Greek bulk carrier called Anangel Happiness so Environment Southland is contacting the shipping company to alert it to the find.