One dead, one missing from Kiwi yacht

  • 13/06/2016
Platino (Supplied)
Platino (Supplied)

One man is dead and a second man is missing after being knocked overboard in rough seas north of New Zealand.

The twenty-metre yacht they were on got in to trouble about 730 kilometres north of Auckland this morning, after suffering serious rigging damage in strong winds and being battered by heavy swells.

Three others are still on board in dangerous conditions.

Maritime New Zealand said an RNZAF Orion had been searching for the missing man, in his 60s, but had to return to base at nightfall.

Rescue Co-ordination Centre spokesman Keith Allen said a commercial fishing vessel was heading to the area.

"Sea conditions are extremely dangerous and the remaining crew on board the Platino have advised that it is too hazardous to be on deck," he said.

"With limited ability to manoeuvre safely, the yacht is motoring to New Zealand, but this could take at least two days.

The fishing boat was expecting to be at the scene by around 7pm on Monday but it would not be possible to search in darkness, he said.

The Orion will return to search the area at first light on Tuesday.