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A 16-year-old boy drowned at Lake Pegasus north of Christchurch today.
Inspector Michael Coulter of the police southern communications centre said the boy had been swimming with a group of friends when he disappeared shortly after midday.
"People tried to hold him up but he slipped away from them."
His body was found after a short search and he was pronounced dead at the scene.
The weather was fine if slightly blustery in the area today.
The matter will be referred to the coroner.