Fishing trip ends in rescue

A 68-year-old man was rescued, albeit reluctantly, after a search and rescue operation was sparked when he failed to return from a fishing trip.

Police and the Dunedin Coastguard were alerted by concerned Karitane residents, following the discovery of his boat trailer on Thursday night.

The search and rescue operation was launched just after 10.30pm, and he was located in his 5m vessel early yesterday morning.

The man was described as inexperienced, and had decided to drop anchor rather than return to Karitane and cross the bar.

Acting Senior Sergeant Nathan White said the man had failed to notify anyone of his movements, and while he had a cellphone and radio on board, he had not called anyone.

It was also a concern that no lights had been activated on the vessel.

Lox Kellas, of Coastguard Dunedin, said the man was ''initially non-compliant'' about leaving his vessel.

''He saw reason in the finish, once he understood the gravity of the situation, the resources that had been deployed, the people who had concerns for his safety.''

Mr Kellas said the lesson was to tell people where you were going, and if you were not going to be back on time to use a cellphone or radio.

The vessel was expected to be recovered today.

- hamish.mcneilly@odt.co.nz

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