The Palmerston North Rescue Helicopter flew six missions in what was a busy New Year period.
Monday, December 30: The chopper was called out just after midnight to conduct a search, using night-vision goggles, for a Hawke's Bay man with a medical condition missing in the Lake Rotokuru Reserve area near Tangiwai. With the assistance of local emergency services personnel he was recovered and airlifted to Palmerston North Hospital around day-break in a stable condition.
Thursday, January 2: In the early afternoon the crew were called to retrieve a woman injured motorcycling on the 42nd Traverse cycle track near Owhango. Because of dense bush, the patient was winched to safety before being airlifted to Whanganui Hospital.
The helicopter was then sent to a search for five trampers missing in the Otaki Forks area of the Tararua Range. The party were overdue after the route they had planned to take was impassable. They were found near the Penn Creek Hut and winched to safety.
Immediately following the search and rescue the helicopter was dispatched to Waituna West, north of Feilding, where a 5-year-old boy was suffering a medical emergency.
Friday, January 3: About noon the chopper was called out to Hunterville where a Palmerston North man had received serious injuries when he was bunted by a sheep.
Sunday, January 5: The helicopter was sent in the early afternoon to the upper Pohangina Valley where a 35-year-old Feilding man had suffered a badly broken leg while assisting with a caving exercise as part of the national Scout jamboree.
- Manawatu Standard
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