TODAY |

Person dead after yacht sinks off Northland coast

One person has died and three others are injured, one critically after a yacht sank off the coast of Northland today.

Police say emergency services were alerted following reports a yacht sank about 37 kilometres off the coast of Cape Brett.

A mayday call was received about 12.30pm after the 47-foot yacht got into trouble in the bad weather.

Two rescue helicopters from Auckland, a Royal New Zealand Air Force Orion, a Coastguard vessel and a merchant vessel were sent in a response co-ordinated by the Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand.

The Orion dropped a life raft to the crew and then the four occupants of the boat were winched by the Westpac Rescue Helicopter.

One person, a male, has subsequently died and police say they are in process of notifying their next of kin.

Another person, a woman, is in a critical condition and was transported to hospital by helicopter.

The remaining two people who were on board are in moderate condition and are being treated by ambulance.

Police say the situation is still ongoing and it is too soon to speculate on what caused the boat to sink.