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By PHILIP CHANDLER

Coastguard Queenstown expects to increase its effectiveness thanks to a high-spec rescue
boat donated to it recently.

President Andy McLeod’s pictured with its new Rayglass Protector, one of 26 former America’s Cup chase boats refitted by Lotto NZ for 26 Coastguards around New Zealand.

He says they’d been ‘‘babying’’ along their former boat and looking for a new one, but financially it would’ve been out of the question.

With their new baby, ‘‘the reliability, the motor, the speed we’re going to have, to the comfortand the technology inside, it is just incredible’’.

Additions include flare cameras, loudhalers, flashing lights, radars and stretchers.

McLeod says they have 15 to 20 volunteers, including two skippers, but are keen to recruit more.

The skippers will be retrained as the new vessel has twin out boards while the old one had a diesel jet engine.

He adds they’re indebted to their main long-time sponsor, Queenstown Airport Corporation,
as well as the Frankton marina, which has provided a berth.

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