Teenage girl dies after boat overturns off Southern coast

File photo / NZ Herald
File photo / NZ Herald

A 13-year-old Balclutha girl has died after a boat capsized at Surat Bay near Pounawea in South Otago this afternoon.

She was on a boat with family members when it overturned in the bay about 1.30pm.

Senior Sergeant Steve Aitken of Dunedin police said three people were on board the boat - two men who made it to shore and a teenage girl who was reported as missing.

The Otago Regional Rescue Helicopter was deployed to help search for the girl, who was soon found Acting Sergeant Steve Griffiths, of Balclutha, confirmed CPR was carried out, but the girl was unable to be revived at the scene.

Emergency services from Balclutha and Owaka responded to the incident.

Mr Griffiths said all three were wearing lifejackets.

The girl had gone out on the boat with her 48-year-old father and a male friend, also aged 13, in the early afternoon.

Mr Aitken said it was thought the boat's engine started to fail and cut out about 300 metres from the shore.

"The boat became swamped before capsizing.''

The man and boy made it ashore together, while the girl was found on shore about 30 minutes later.

"Tragically, resuscitation attempts to revive her were unsuccessful,'' Mr Aitken said.

Police did not expect to release the girl's name until tomorrow.

- additional reporting APNZ

- Otago Daily Times

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