A fishing vessel that smashed into rocks in the Bay of Islands this morning has now sunk, and will be left overnight with a salvage operation to continue tomorrow.
Three people with hypothermia were rescued from Nine Pin Rocks after the 23-tonne boat grounded in the early hours of the morning.
There was 1600 litres of diesel on board, but the coastguard said any that has spilled was disappearing quickly.
Northland Regional Council harbourmaster Jim Lyall said they had hoped to drag the boat away, but it had sunk, and was right at the back of a narrow cove.
He said they would go back tomorrow with divers and airbags to try and lift the vessel up.