26 Dec 2012

Solo swimmer drowned

5:50 am on 26 December 2012

A man drowned while swimming alone at a Coromandel beach in rough conditions on Monday as life guards were on their way to warn him of the danger.

Jason Johns, 43, of Hamilton, was the first person to drown this holiday season.

Coromandel life guard supervisor Matt Williams said a patrol spotted the man swimming alone at Whiritoa Beach just before midday.

He was pulled out of the water within minutes, but could not be revived.