'Very lucky' - cruise ship narrowly avoids wiping out stricken dinghy with four on board in Tauranga Harbour

A huge cruise ship narrowly avoided running over a rubber dinghy with four people on board in Tauranga Harbour, and video of the incident has been posted on social media in a reminder to boaties of the rules.

The incident unfolded at the harbour entrance on the evening of December 14 and the Bay of Plenty Regional Council has now posted video on Facebook under the heading "Very Lucky!"

It shows the 317-metre Celebrity Solstice coming within about five metres of hitting the small inflatable rubber dinghy, which had broke down with four people on board.

The cruise ship passes beside the dinghy as two other boats speed to its aid. One of the boats tows the dinghy away from the ship.

"Keep clear 50 metres to each side of a ship and 500 metres ahead," the council wrote with its video post. 

"That’s two container ship lengths to the side and three and a half rugby fields in front. 

"Don’t let your next trip be your last."