Three people were rescued by Maketu Coastguard today from a inflatable boat that overturned as it was coming in across Pukehina bar today.

Coastguard president Shane Beech said one of the four people aboard the boat swam to shore and the others clung to the hull until two Coastguard jetskis reached them drifting towards Maketu, less than 100m offshore.

The occupants of the boat, who ranged in age from 10 to 43, were staying in the Little Waihi camping ground and were treated by St John Ambulance. "They took on a bit of water," Mr Beech said.

People on the beach raised the alarm shortly after 1pm today. The 5.5m inflatable was towed back to shore by the Coastguard's jet boat.