Night rescue at Heads
Mangawhai Heads Volunteer Lifeguard Service (MHVLS) received a call-out from the NZ Police on August 22 at 7.30pm alerting them to a group of people stranded on Head Rock, Mangawhai Heads. The MHVLS After Hours Emergency Call Out Squad (ECOS) was activated. Lifeguards involved with land-based SAR operations were Gordon Finalyson, Mike Arden, Mark Vercoe and Alex Tidyman.
Using the club’s purpose built search and rescue light, lifeguards located the group huddled in the lee of Howling Wolf Rock. Off duty Mangawhai-based Muriwai lifeguard Damian Malloy then swam out to the group to reassure them.
Making phone contact with the stranded group, a surf rescue boat was launched, crewed by lifeguards Mike Ferguson, Corey Vercoe, Billy Whelan and Quinn Bedford.
Despite the 2m swell the team were able to negotiate the channel, land at Head Rock, and steady the craft to bring the group aboard. Once the lifeguards were aboard they were dropped at Picnic Bay for medical assessment and checks. One lifeguard received minor cuts from the rocks.
The incident highlights the importance of checking the tide and weather conditions before heading along the coast, especially when navigating rocky headlands after dark.
Youth art entries online
Mangawhai Artists Inc continues to host its Youth Art Showcase online, exhibiting the artwork of young artists aged from 4 to 20 years from Mangawhai and surrounding areas.
Organisers are asking for supporters to spread the word amongst keen young artists and encourage their participation.
A number of entries will be awarded a pack of art materials from The French Art Shop to support their future artistic endeavours.
Entries of all sorts of art are welcomed including drawing, painting, sculpture, collage, and items constructed of wood or other materials. The work must be created this year whether at home or at school. Along with photos of the work, artists submit a title and short description about why and how they made the work.
So far entries by students from a number of schools including Mangawhai Kindergarten, Mangawhai Beach School, Bream Bay College, Otamatea College, and Rodney College have been submitted. The works explore imagination, political events, emotional experiences, symbolism, mythology and more.
A special celebration and awards event will be held at the gallery in the spring.
Entries are invited until Friday September 25 online at youth.mangawhaiartists.co.nz.
Kayaker rescued off-shore
An afternoon paddle went horribly wrong for one man on August 27, rescued from his sinking kayak by surf lifeguards from Waipu Cove Surf Life Saving Club 24 hour Emergency call out squad about 1.5km from shore near Waipu River Mouth, suffering from mild hypothermia and exhaustion.
The kayak he was using to go fishing in was missing a bung, as well as a hole covering. Taking on a lot of water he was unable to float efficiently and paddle back to shore, clinging to the vertical kayak for about three hours before being spotted by a member of the public who called 111. Surf lifeguards responded quickly and efficiently as a team to bring the man back to shore. Local Police were also on scene to assist.
The man was luckily wearing a lifejacket which probably saved his life, and weather conditions also changed quickly while he was out at sea.
The rescue highlighted the importance of checking your gear before going out on the ocean.