Person dies on Northland beach after hectic weekend for lifeguards, over 50 rescues in north

A person has died following a hectic weekend on New Zealand's northern beaches. 

Lifeguards made 52 rescues on Saturday and Sunday - more than they normally would in the peak of summer. 

In one incident, a member of the public notified staff of a body washed up on Baylys Beach in Northland about 10:45am on Sunday.

"Ambulance attended and the person was confirmed deceased," a police spokesperson said.

"Initial enquiries indicate the person was fishing alone at the time in a remote area of the beach."

In another incident, a person had to be resuscitated and airlifted to hospital after they got into trouble at Auckland's Karekare Beach on Sunday.

The person was flown to the hospital after being resuscitated at Karekare Beach.
The person was flown to the hospital after being resuscitated at Karekare Beach. Photo credit: Supplied

There were also four major first aid events and searches undertaken for eight people during the day.

"It was a combination of thousands of people being at the beach because of the hot weather, along with decent swells, warm water temperatures and outgoing tides for most of the day. This leads to some really strong rip currents popping up in places like Auckland's west coast and in Raglan," northern region Lifesaving operations manager James Lea said.

"We're so incredibly grateful to our volunteers for putting in that extra mahi to keep people safe."

The weekend's rescues were timely reminders if people get stuck in a rip, "they need to remember to relax, raise their hand and ride the rip", Lea said.

"It's best to float on back and not swim against the current in order to preserve your energy.

"We have 18 search and rescue squads from Ahipara to Raglan that are available 24/7 to save those in trouble in the water. Just call 111 and ask for police, they have a direct line to activate our lifeguards."