Surf Life Saving New Zealand says the theft of thousands of dollars worth of equipment in the Coromandel has endangered its rescue efforts.
Solar panels worth $6000 were stolen last night from a remote radio network site on the Whangamata peninsula.
It was the second similar theft in two weeks after $30,000 worth of equipment was stolen from the Pukehina Surf Life Saving club in the Bay of Plenty.
Surf Life Saving's manager Allan Mundy said the latest theft means clubs in the Coromandel and Bay of Plenty were having to operate on separate radio channels.
He said the Whangamata site must have been targeted as it would have taken considerable equipment and time to remove the solar panels from a lofty tower.