A man suffering a medical condition has been airlifted by helicopter from a cruise ship off Northland's east coast and flown to Auckland Hospital in a serious condition tonight.
Crew of the Auckland Westpac Rescue Helicopter were dispatched to assist the man in his forties aboard the ship northwest of the Cavalli Islands. They arrived at the scene at around 8.25pm.
Auckland Rescue Helicopter Trust said crew established good communications with the ship and were set up for their first night winch using an AW169 aircraft.
However they opted for a deck landing on the ship instead to conserve fuel.
Attending Air Crew Officer Graham Jones said, "Working closely with the ship's captain, landing on the ship was the faster and safer option."
The patient, suffering a medical complaint, was flown to Auckland City Hospital in a serious condition.