26 May 2024

Navy joins search for man missing from Wellington ferry

5:48 pm on 26 May 2024
A police boat at Wellington Harbour, where authorities are searching for a man who is believed to have fallen overboard, on 24 May, 2024.

The search is being led by the Police Maritime Unit with help from the Navy. Photo: RNZ / Samuel Rillstone

Searchers plan to continue scouring Wellington Harbour this week for a man thought to have fallen overboard from a Wellington ferry.

It is thought a man fell into the sea around 6am on Friday.

The Pākehā man in his 40s was the sole passenger on the first East by West Ferry harbour crossing from the central city to Days Bay in Eastbourne early that morning, but was not on board when the ferry arrived at its destination.

The search is being led by the Police Maritime Unit, with the Navy joining the hunt on Sunday.

On Friday the harbour was searched by Police, Coastguard and others, with 19 vessels and a rescue helicopter taking part, the Rescue Coordination Centre said.

On Saturday police said they were no longer searching the water, and would instead concentrate on the coastline.

The identity of the missing man is not yet known, but police have appealed for information about him or about anyone missing who matches his description.

He is described as fair skinned, about 180cm tall with darker hair and believed to be aged in his 40s. He was wearing a dark jacket with a zip and dark pants.

Police said they will release further information when they are in a position to do so.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs