A male hang glider pilot has died after the glider crashed into Kariotahi Beach, near Auckland.

Stuff has reported it looked like the hang glider had suffered a "catastrophic failure" before it fell to the ground, police said.

"The hang glider hit the ground with a very big bang and then it was a case of running and calling the rescue services," an officer on the scene said.

Emergency services attended the incident just after 4pm.


Police will release more information when it becomes available.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) said it had been notified about the incident.

An investigation was now underway by the New Zealand Hang Gliding and Paragliding Association who were being assisted by the CAA, a CAA spokeswoman said.

The MetService surf forecast for Kariotahi said the maximum wind gusts recorded for the day were 12 knots or 22km/h.

The forecast for the days was long fine spells with westerlies dying out at night.

In 2009 youth counsellor and anti-violence worker Bradely Cameron died during his second solo hang gliding flight near Karioitahi Beach.

The 39-year-old from Remuera, Auckland, was a novice flier who had qualified for his beginner's pilot rating shortly before the accident.