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Source: New Zealand Police (District News)

Please attribute to Marlborough Area Prevention Manager Peter Payne:

A hunter was winched to safety with a broken arm and a dislocated shoulder, following a five hour rescue in Waikawa, Picton last week. 

Police launched a search and rescue on 21 April, after reports of a 76-year-old falling down very steep and challenging terrain, approximately 150 metres from the road. 

The man’s cries for help were heard by residents in Amelia Crescent and another member of his hunting party, who was some distance away.

LandSAR provided footing for St John staff and used ropes to secure them and allow access to the hunter, so he could be assessed and medicated down the steep slope.

The hunter was then carried up the steep terrain by the LandSAR team to a clearing where a helicopter was able to winch the hunter out and transport him to Wairau Hospital.

The operation took approximately five hours, from the time staff were notified to when the hunter arrived at the hospital.

He is very appreciative of the help he received from LandSAR.

On the morning of the rescue, the hunter said he was in a hurry and put on his sneakers instead of his hunting boots, which could have been one of the reasons he slipped.

He had recently bought a locator beacon, but unfortunately a mate was using it at the time.

A distress beacon lets you instantly signal for help and they work almost anywhere in the world. The beacon shows rescuers your approximate location, taking the ‘search’ out of search and rescue. The sooner rescuers can help you, the more likely you are to survive.

Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand works 24/7, 365 days of the year responding to all distress beacon activations. The team acts quickly to find out as many details as they can about who set off the distress beacon and promptly send search and rescue teams to assist.

For more information on how to stay safe when hunting visit:

Police want to thank all those involved, as this was a fantastic effort by both the LandSAR team and St John staff.


Issued by the Police Media Centre