Kaipara Harbour tragedy: Water Safety urges boaties to wear life jackets

A family wearing their life jackets (Getty)
A family wearing their life jackets (Getty)

Water Safety New Zealand is urging all boaties and passengers to wear life jackets after the Kaipara tragedy.

It's unclear whether the 11 people on board were wearing life jackets when the boat capsized, which killed seven men and left one still missing.

Water Safety New Zealand CEO Jonty Mills says it's too early to speculate on the cause of the accident but says it serves as a reminder.

"We'd certainly encourage all boaties to be wearing life jackets, and naturally to have an experienced skipper on board and to know the conditions and the risks," he says.

"We know from the research and the data that over two-thirds of all boating fatalities from a drowning perspective could have been saved had they been wearing life jackets."