Rescued hunter had locator beacon

Registering beacons allows rescue services to get to people quicker.  Image: www.beacons.co.nz
Registering beacons allows rescue services to get to people quicker. Image: www.beacons.co.nz
An injured hunter in a party of four stranded in South Westland "did the right thing" by having a personal locator beacon and activating it early, the Rescue Co-ordination Centre of New Zealand says.

The rescue on Wednesday unfolded as two trampers missing for nearly three weeks in the Kahurangi National Park, at the top end of the South Island, were found an extensive search.

The group was inland from Bruce Bay when one suffered an ankle injury.

"From our point of view they did the right thing by having a PLB," Rescue Coordination Centre NZ manager Mike Hill said.

"The hunters were well prepared, had let people know where they were going and were carrying a registered personal locator beacon."

The co-ordination centre arranged for the man to be rescued by helicopter, and he was taken to a nearby medical centre for treatment.

The South Westland helicopter operator which had flown the group into the area initially was able to retrieve the injured man yesterday morning.

With the first long weekend post-lockdown nearly here, it was a reminder how vital it was to be prepared for an emergency.

Register your beacon at www.beacons.org.nz - it provides RCCNZ with crucial details to provide assistance faster.

Mr Hill said VHF radios were a great option, while a cellphone in a sealed bag was better than nothing.

- By Brendon McMahon

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