Two boats came to the rescue of three stricken boaties thrown into Manukau Harbour when their vessel capsized this morning.

The drama unfolded around 10am when a 5.5m vessel overturned in the water 2km off Clarks Beach.

Northern Region Coastguard duty officer Melissa Ousey said two other vessels saw the incident and rushed to the aid of those in the water.

"Three people were in the water for a short time," Ms Ousey said.


"They were then picked up by two other vessels who saw it capsize."

Coastguard monitored the incident over the radio but because of the prompt action of those on the water it did not need to respond, she said.

One of the boats towed the capsized vessel back to Clarks Beach following the incident.

She said the capsizing happened well short of the notorious Manukau Bar, which was not posing problems for boaties today.