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Lost in Tararuas, trampers rescued by helicopter

News from NZ Police
The two trampers who got into difficulty in the Tararua Ranges on Saturday night have been airlifted out today.

They are safe and well and uninjured, thanks initially to their Personal Locator Beacon.

They were picked up from the Dundas Hut area just after first light this morning.

Amalgamated Helicopters had a small window of opportunity to pick them up due to a break in the poor weather.

Eleven Search and Rescue personal including Police staff and volunteers and eight Incident Management Team members were involved in the search. The trampers and their families would like to thank all those involved in the rescue operation which helped to find their loved ones.

News from NZ Police – April 17
Two well-prepared trampers have been found after getting into difficulties in the Tararua Ranges on Saturday night. They had a personal locator beacon and activated it while seeking shelter.

At about 9pm last night, with the assistance of a crew from the Royal New Zealand Air Force’s No.3 Squadron, New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) staff coped with severe turbulence and low cloud to transport three Police-led Search and Rescue teams into the search area on an NH90 helicopter.

They located the emergency beacon, which helped SAR staff and a rescue dog to find the trampers at 1.30am this morning. They were cold, tired and exhausted.

This morning the men have been taken to a nearby Department of Conservation Hut – Dundas Hut, where further assistance has been given to them, such as food and dry clothing. They have been assessed medically and they appear to be in good condition.

The plan is to use further assistance from the NZDF squadron to airlift them from the ranges, however the weather has not been ideal and this is yet to happen.

It’s always best to plan your trip, as these trampers did, because they were well-prepared. In this case, a personal locator beacon was a good investment.

Beacons can be a lifesaving tool as it means emergency services will be aware that something has happened much faster if you get injured or lost. These beacons don’t have to be purchased, they can be hired on a day-by-day basis.

Follow the Outdoor Safety Code:

• Plan Your Trip
• Tell Someone Your Plans
• Be Aware Of The Weather
• Know Your Limits
• Take Sufficient Supplies