An Australian has died in a rafting accident in New Zealand. Picture: Supplied.
An Australian has died in a rafting accident in New Zealand. Picture: Supplied.

Aussie tourist in NZ tragedy identified

AN AUSTRALIAN man who died during a rafting trip in New Zealand's South Island has been revealed as 31-year-old Joshua Paroci.

The New South Wales native was one of six Australians rafting on the Shotover River when the raft overturned on rapids at Skippers Canyon near Queenstown on Saturday.

New Zealand police publicly identified Mr Paroci on Monday.

Mr Paroci lost his grip as the raft was being towed to a bank, and was swept through another rapid.

 

He could not be resuscitated on the shore, according to Totally Tourism - which owns Challenge Rafting - general manager Tim Barker.

Paramedics arrived at the scene by helicopter at 5pm on Saturday (3pm AEST) but were unable to save the man.

CPR and a defibrillator were also used before they arrived.

"We believe everything was done by the book and standard procedure. But the outcome was certainly something we did not expect," Mr Barker said.

Two other rafts on the same trip did not overturn, Stuff reported.

A view of part of the Shotover River. Picture: istock
A view of part of the Shotover River. Picture: istock

"Challenge Rafting wish to offer their deepest sympathy to the victim's family and friends," Queenstown Rafting and Challenge Rafting spokeswoman Tsehai Tiffin told Stuff.

Ms Tiffin added it was not unusual for rafts to overturn on grade 4-5 rivers.

She told Stuff customers were issued with safety equipment including a wetsuit, neoprene jacket, bootees, spray jacket, life jacket and helmet.

The survivors flew back to Australia on Sunday morning after one was treated for injuries at Lake District Hospital.

Police said an autopsy would be carried out, according to Stuff.

"Police continue to make inquiries on behalf of the coroner and with the assistance of Maritime NZ, which is conducting its own investigation into what happened," they said.

It's understood Saturday's weather conditions were fine and sunny.


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