30 Jan 2013

Search for boatie goes into third day

11:59 am on 30 January 2013

The search for a man missing after his boat overturned at the southern entrance to Tauranga Harbour on Monday evening has entered its third day.

Katikati farmer Tim Mair, 52, went into the sea after a rogue wave on the Bowentown bar engulfed his boat. Four others on board managed to swim to Matakana Island and flag down a passing vessel.

Police say the four younger people were the man's 23-year-old daughter and 15-year-old son, a seven-year-old grandson and a 14-year-old friend of the teenage boy, who managed to swim to Matakana Island.

Police have found the vessel but say Mr Mair is presumed to have drowned.

They say he was an experienced boatie but conditions at the time he tried to cross the bar were marginal.

The vessel carried lifejackets but police say not everyone on board was wearing them.