Three people have died and two have been rescued after a catamaran overturned off the coast of Newcastle.
About 10:10am on Thursday an emergency beacon was activated from a 11.7m catamaran that had overturned approximately 7 nautical miles off the coast at Stockton Beach.
Officers from Marine Area Command are responding , together with Marine Rescue Association and the RAAF, and coordinated by the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC).
According to police, two people, believed to be a girl and a man have been winched from the water and taken to John Hunter Hospital.
Three bodies have been found in the water and have been retrieved by Marine Rescue.
The operation continues.
Anyone with more information is urged to contact CrimeStoppers on 1800 333 000.