Survivor Club

Rescue Map

Auckland, Auckland

Name McKinney
Product Name ResQLink™ PLB
Date of Rescue 08/06/2017
Saved By Westpac Rescue Helicopter
Beacon Purchased From Hunting & Fishing New Zealand
Lives Saved 1

We were away for weekend tramp to Pahautea Hut in Mt Pirongia. We made it to the hut on the Saturday night after a long damp day getting there. We arose Sunday morning to find another damp day as the mountain had pretty well clagged in, not alot of visibility. But we headed off as we needed to get home for the following week at work and school. About 2.5hrs into the return journey, Shanelle slipped on a greasy log and twisted her knee. An ice pack and Ibuprofen were quickly applied and we took the opportunity to stop for a quick lunch. It became quickly obvious that Shanelle wasn't going to be able to walk the rest of the way out, 6 or 7km to go and over quite rooty and muddy terrain. The decision was made to activate the PLB and get helicopter asistance. The other 3 scouts in the party opted to continue hiking out; they had the experience, gear and fitness to do so; so off they went. Shanelle was left waiting with Kerrin our scout leader. It took an hour and a half for the chopper to arrive, and then another 20 mins for them to locate us. We were in a 10m wide clearing in fairly dense bush, and no real way of signalling our location until they were right over us. A medic and police officer were winched onto our site. Shanelle got winched up first, followed by Kerrin and our gear. The police officer took off down the trail to ensure the other 3 scouts made it out ok. Kerrin got dropped at our vehicle to meet the boys, while Shanelle got taken to Waikato Hospital for a checkup. The boys arrived shortly after Kerrin did. Shanelle was discharged later the night with a badly sprained knee, no return to the bush anytime soon for her!

We very grateful for having an ACR PLB on us to use, otherwise a particularly uncomfortable night in the bush would have been ahead of Kerrin and Shanelle. Also very grateful to the team at the NZ Rescue Centre and Westpac Helicopters Wakato for coming to get us.