A solo yachtsman has been rescued in high winds and seas off Tauranga.
The 55-year-old was sailing from Auckland to Dunedin in his 8.8m motor yacht when the steering failed 70km north east of Tauranga.
He was rescued by the coastguard at 4am, eight hours after he activated his distress beacon.
Rescue Coordination Centre mission coordinator Geoff Lunt praised the Coastguard crew for bringing the yachtsman aboard in difficult conditions about 10km south of Mayor Island.
The yacht has been abandoned and a navigation safety warning has been issued to shipping in the area. The yachtsman was uninjured.