The search for a man missing after a jet boat crash on a West Coast river has been called off today.

Two men were washed downstream on the Taramakau River after a jet boat crash on Friday.

Police were first called to the scene, about 1km upstream from the William Stewart Bridge, about 2.25pm.

A local helicopter crew rushed to the scene and managed to save one man but they were unable to save the other.


Daniel Skeggs is believed to be the man who is still missing following the incident.

Over the past three days, searches for Skeggs have involved jet boats with surf rescue personnel onboard, recovery divers, search and rescue ground crews and volunteers, however they are yet to locate a body.

However, Police said the searches have been temporarily suspended today due to conditions on the river.

This means there will be no action by the dive squad or ground crews today, police said.

The search will be reassessed tomorrow.

The announcement comes after Skeggs' partner, Charleen Carstairs, posted an emotional tribute online yesterday.

"We have to bring you home to your family and friends," she wrote.

"I need you home, I can't leave here without you so please help us find you today."


Carstairs said Skeggs died doing what he loved, with his best friend.

"You always said as long as you die doing what you love, with speed and adrenalin running through you, that you would go with a smile on your face," she wrote.

Daring water rescue:

On Saturday, Ahaura Helicopters pilot Heath Bagnall spoke of the daring water rescue he performed to save one of the men - believed to be Skeggs' best friend.

Bagnall was working in the area when ground crew called and alerted him to the crash.

He and a crewman threw empty fuel canisters into water in an attempt to save one man.

"He was that weak he could not even hold on to it," Bagnall said.

"He just disappeared backwards into the murky water."

They then immediately moved on to try and save the other man.

Bagnall's crewman straddled the skid with his legs in the water and reached out to him.

"Once we had a grip on him we dragged him backwards and sideways through the water all at the same time," Bagnall said.

The rescued man was treated by an ambulance at the scene and taken to hospital.