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Castlepoint rescue follows fall

A mishap that could have had serious consequences at Castlepoint on Sunday afternoon has highlighted the need to be mindful while participating in activities near water.

Emergency services responded to initial reports that an individual had “fallen down a cliff into the water near Castlepoint”, although those attending the incident concluded the tumble had not been from a significant height.

A woman had been fishing off the reef when she slipped into the sea, and a group of young men nearby helped pull the woman to safety.

It is understood several members of the public called the incident in to emergency services, prompting a response from both police and the Castlepoint fire crew, with the sirens at the fire station being activated shortly before 2.30pm.

Castlepoint Fire Brigade’s Anders Crofoot said the area is a popular spot to fish as it sits on the sea-side of the lighthouse and offers a greater variety of fish to catch.

“It’s an attractive place because you’re actually casting into quite deep water so you actually can catch species that you wouldn’t catch if you were just surfcasting,” Crofoot said.

When the fire crew arrived, the woman had already been pulled from the water, and they assessed her for injuries.

The woman was understandably shaken up by the ordeal, Crofoot said, but there was no indication she had hit her head, as has been reported by other outlets.

She had suffered “a few minor scratches”, and the responding crew focused on helping the woman warm up before getting her back to her vehicle on the beach.

A police spokesperson confirmed that an ambulance was not needed.

Onlookers to the incident commented that the woman was lucky not to have been swept back in by waves to crash against the rocks.

Crofoot said that while the spot on the reef is popular with fishers, it isn’t common for people to fall in there.

“Just be careful and be sure to watch your footing,” Crofoot advised, while the police spokesperson noted that “the reef’s a dangerous place and people need to keep their eye on things”.

There are other areas of the reef – especially near the basin – where even in calm weather, the waves can break over the reef and drag people into the sea.

A recent report by Water Safety New Zealand [WSNZ] showed that 14 people drowned while gathering kaimoana [seafood] across the country in 2023.

WSNZ chief executive Daniel Gerrard acknowledged that fishing from rocks [commonly referred to as ‘rock fishing’] is both a pastime in New Zealand and a “rewarding adventure that brings friends together” but said that a focus on safety when doing these activities is paramount.

“Always wear a well-fitted life jacket, choose the right footwear for those slippery surfaces, and keep an eye on the sea’s mood,” he said.

Gerrard also encouraged fishing with friends as it not only “doubles the fun but also ensures help is at hand if you need it”.

“Safety must always come first, so we can all return home with great stories and the day’s catch,” he said.

“Let’s make every fishing trip a safe and memorable one, but remember, no fish is worth dying for.” with fishers, it isn’t common for people to fall in there.

“Just be careful and be sure to watch your footing,” Crofoot advised, while the police spokesperson noted that “the reef’s a dangerous place and people need to keep their eye on things”.

There are other areas of the reef – especially near the basin – where even in calm weather, the waves can break over the reef and drag people into the sea.

A recent report by Water Safety New Zealand [WSNZ] showed that 14 people drowned while gathering kaimoana [seafood] across the country in 2023.

WSNZ chief executive Daniel Gerrard acknowledged that fishing from rocks [commonly referred to as ‘rock fishing’] is both a pastime in New Zealand and a “rewarding adventure that brings friends together” but said that a focus on safety when doing these activities is paramount.

“Always wear a well-fitted life jacket, choose the right footwear for those slippery surfaces, and keep an eye on the sea’s mood,” he said.

Gerrard also encouraged fishing with friends as it not only “doubles the fun but also ensures help is at hand if you need it”.

“Safety must always come first, so we can all return home with great stories and the day’s catch,” he said.

“Let’s make every fishing trip a safe and memorable one, but remember, no fish is worth dying for.” with fishers, it isn’t common for people to fall in there.

“Just be careful and be sure to watch your footing,” Crofoot advised, while the police spokesperson noted that “the reef’s a dangerous place and people need to keep their eye on things”.

There are other areas of the reef – especially near the basin – where even in calm weather, the waves can break over the reef and drag people into the sea.

A recent report by Water Safety New Zealand [WSNZ] showed that 14 people drowned while gathering kaimoana [seafood] across the country in 2023.

WSNZ chief executive Daniel Gerrard acknowledged that fishing from rocks [commonly referred to as ‘rock fishing’] is both a pastime in New Zealand and a “rewarding adventure that brings friends together” but said that a focus on safety when doing these activities is paramount.

“Always wear a well-fitted life jacket, choose the right footwear for those slippery surfaces, and keep an eye on the sea’s mood,” he said.

Gerrard also encouraged fishing with friends as it not only “doubles the fun but also ensures help is at hand if you need it”.

“Safety must always come first, so we can all return home with great stories and the day’s catch,” he said.

“Let’s make every fishing trip a safe and memorable one, but remember, no fish is worth dying for.”

2 COMMENTS

  1. I am so greatful to my partner Kevin and the French man that pulled me out of the water that day I owe a huge thanks to them both 🙏 a huge thanks to the response team who gave me medical attention….

    This could had gone alot differently if it wasn’t for the quick response from my partner and for this I will be forever greatful my love…
    It’s made me realise to be more aware when fishing of rocks and always keep alert to the safety of my surroundings..

    Thank you so much to everyone that day that has made it possible to still walk and breath this earth a while longer

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