Longtime friends of a Whangārei man missing since Wednesday night have pleaded for people to keep searching their properties for signs of their loved "Benchy".
Brian Arthur Bench, 72, was last seen at an address on Memorial Dr, near Riverside Dr in Whangārei.
Northland Police Senior Sergeant Shane Turner said, on the night Bench went missing, he went to bed around 8pm. His wife later woke to find he had left.
It has been reported on social media that Bench may have a medical condition that could affect his cognitive function.
Police reported a possible sighting of Bench in downtown Whangārei around 7am on Thursday.
Turner said they were unable to confirm what Bench had been wearing at the time of his disappearance but police believed he was barefoot.
Police continued their appeal for the public to provide "more eyes and ears in the community".
"We want people to check their backyards and anything like that where they are living. It's a needle in a haystack. We roughly know where he was but where he's gone - no-one knows."
Police have also asked people to check their footage, from dash cams or elsewhere, taken in the area Riverside area for signs of Bench.
Sarah Wells has known Bench and his partner for close to 17-years. She described him as "serious" and a "hard worker".
"Back in the day if you bought a car it didn't come with a radio or bluetooth and Benchy would fix it for you. He's just like everybody's dad."
Bench's business, Brian Bench Car Audio, made him a well-known and liked local.
Wells alongside her family and staff who worked with Bench's partner searched parks in Whangārei near his home.
"People need to keep looking, keep searching for him, and don't give up. More people need to know that he is missing so we keep checking sheds and backyards for him."
Police ramped up their search for Bench to include a helicopter and a Coastguard Whangārei vessel that can be seen scouring the Hatea River.
Northland's Land Search and Rescue team have joined forces with Police Land Search and Rescue.
Detective Sergeant Paul Overton, of Northland police Search and Rescue, said their efforts were focused on covering as large an area as possible near Riverside Dr while they had the available resources.
High risk areas, such as waterways, were a priority in the search.
He said the helicopter was flying low and just asked for people to be aware that it was operating.
Searchers were door knocking houses in the area today and had established a base near the skate park on Riverside Dr.
"We've had a large number of offers for help from the public which has been awesome," Overton said.
Any relevant information could be passed onto police on 105, quoting file number 210708/9824.
Anyone who sees Bench is asked to call 111 – reference police event number P047117146.