News from NZ Police
The search for the 34-year-old Auckland man who went missing off a Northland beach on Wednesday evening is continuing today. Alexy Ivanov was last seen entering the water off Uretiti Beach, south of Whangärei, about 5pm yesterday.
Staff at the local Department of Conservation Camp Ground alerted Police about an hour later when they noticed the man’s clothes and car were still there and there was no sign of him.
A search has been carried out on the water and shoreline since the man went missing.
Today Police staff have continued searching the shoreline and the Royal New Zealand Navy has been brought into to assist using its side scan sonar. The torpedo-shaped sonar has been deployed underwater outside the surf line and is covering an area one kilometre either side of where the man entered the water.
It is fully automated and moves underwater taking images of the seabed as it goes. Once it has finished its scan it surfaces and the data is then downloaded. Any anomaly found on the sea floor will show up on the images.
The sonar will be operating for about five hours and is expected to finish at 7pm.
Tomorrow the Navy personnel will be towing another sonar through the area inside the surf line where there the thick algae bloom hampered the search yesterday.
News from NZ Police – March 14
A 34-year-old Auckland man who went missing off a Northland beach is now presumed to have drowned. Alexy Ivanov was last seen entering the water off Uretiti Beach, south of Whangärei, about 5pm yesterday. Staff at the local Department of Conservation Camp Ground alerted Police about an hour later when they noticed the man’s clothes and car were still there and there was no sign of him.
A search began of the area until dark yesterday evening and continued this morning.
A helicopter has been covering the area around where the man went missing. Visibility from the air is very clear north of where the man entered the water. However, the search south of this area is proving difficult with an algae bloom hampering visibility.
Police staff are also searching the beach on quad bikes from local surf lifesaving clubs and in a 4WD vehicle. The Police Air Support Unit (Eagle Helicopter) is being deployed this afternoon to assist in the search.
Earlier News from NZ Police
Police are searching for a 34-year-old Auckland man who went missing yesterday off Uretiti Beach, south of Whangärei. The man was seen entering the water about 5pm near the Department of Conservation (DOC) camp ground. About 6pm some DOC workers noticed that the man’s clothes and deck chair were still on the beach, but there was no sign of him. His car had also been left in the camp ground.
Police were alerted and a shoreline search was carried out using IRBs (inflatable rubber boats) from the Ruakaka and Waipu Surf Clubs. The man was not located and the search resumed at first light this morning.
Police Search and Rescue staff are searching the shoreline this morning and a helicopter is also searching the area.