Rising river levels have caused havoc for one Masterton driver, who found his four-wheel-drive trapped in the Ruamahanga River yesterday.

The unoccupied vehicle and boat trailer became stuck in the Ruamahanga River as the river swelled and were swept downstream by the rising water.

The vehicle's owner, who gave his name as Daniel, said he had been testing his jetboat at Percy's Reserve and had gone about 10m down the river when he returned to find the rapidly rising water had claimed his four-wheel-drive and boat trailer, which had been parked near a shallow part of the river.

"It's normally only half as high," Daniel said.


"The water just came up so fast.

"As soon as I saw the river coming up I pulled the boat on to the shore."

He was ruing his decision to leave his wallet and cash inside the vehicle, he said.

He had been jetboating in the district for about three years and had never seen water rise as quickly as it had that afternoon.

The force of the swollen river had carried the vehicle about 100m downstream where it rolled on to its side and fetched up near the bank of the river.

It was hoped once the river subsided, a tractor could pull the vehicle out.