Top-of-the-range patrol vessel for Nelson fisheries officers

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If you're thinking of violating fishing rules in the Nelson region, you'd be wise to think twice.

Ministry for Primary Industries Nelson fisheries officers have welcomed a faster, sleeker, more advanced patrol vessel to the fold – one that eliminates the need to go back to base to refuel or to carry fuel on board.

Nelson/Marlborough Chief Compliance Officer, Anthony Little, says the purpose-built vessel provides significantly more capability.

"This vessel has a far greater range, allowing us to go further – uninterrupted – than we’ve gone before. For example, we now have the ability to go beyond Farewell Spit from Nelson. That's a pretty big improvement.

"It's also pretty quick with a top speed of 45 knots or 83km/h.

"We've got a top of the range sea-faring vessel now. The team's very happy."

The 7.5 metre, Picton-built Naiad is aptly named, too. She's called the Kiwa – meaning 'God of all Fish or divine ocean guardian' in Māori.

"We're very happy with the name we came up with – it's very appropriate given the nature of the work she’ll be involved in."

The Kiwa was formally unveiled this morning in a blessing conferred by kaumātua to the Nelson city and Tasman district councils, Archdeacon Andy Joseph.

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