The search for a diver reported overdue in the Marlborough Sounds has been called off for the night.

Police, search and rescue teams and Coastguard have been searching since the diver was reported missing at around 10.20am, failing to resurface from a dive north of Stephens Island.

The police national dive squad has been dispatched and will join the search once they are at the scene. Police have thanked boat owners in the area for offers of help.

Senior Sergeant Clare Robertson from the Tasman District Command Centre said police were liaising with St John ambulance staff.

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Coastguard had been advised and were working with police, Robertson said.

The search will resume again in the morning.