Cold vigil for stuck driver

An Australian-born Bannockburn resident who spent a snowy Monday night in his bogged vehicle on a saddle above the Nevis Valley was given a lift back home by Cromwell police yesterday, who described the ride as "all part of the service".

Constable Maude O'Connell said the man, who did not want to be named, rang emergency services as he started walking towards Bannockburn from his cold overnight vigil and was taken home.

During a 4WD trip on Sunday, the man's vehicle became stuck in mud on private property.

Taken back to Bannockburn by fellow four-wheel-drivers, he returned on Monday but still could not free the vehicle, so decided to stay the night.

Const O'Connell said it was the man's responsibility to recover his vehicle at his own cost.

No charges would be laid, although she stressed the need for caution during Central Otago winters.

"This is just another example of people not being aware of winter conditions in Central Otago. It ended up being nothing, but he could have easily hurt himself," she said.

The incident had not reached gossip status at the Bannockburn hotel yesterday and it seemed the man in question was keeping a low profile about his experience.


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