Exercise turns real for teens

18:30, Jan 28 2014

A group of teens have been praised for stepping up to the plate after their team-building exercise turned to a real life rescue when a mate was injured falling into a cave.

A 19-year-old had to be rescued from the Onepoto Caves at Lake Waikaremoana this morning when he fell five metres, badly injuring his chest, neck and arm.

He was part of a group of teenagers from Dannevirke who wound up in a spot of trouble at the lakes where they had been part of an outdoors team building exercise.

The Lowe Corporation Rescue Helicopter circling the area spotted the group waving for help but was unable to reach the young man through the dense bush, pilot Jeremy Bruce said.

So the helicopter winched down a stretcher and a paramedic and the four teens carried their injured mate out to the lake where the helicopter was able to land.

The teen was treated by a paramedic at the lakeside and then flown to Hawke's Bay Regional hospital for further treatment.

The walk would have ordinarily been five minutes but the teens, carrying a dead-weight, showed they had picked up the teamwork they set out to learn, Mr Bruce said.

''Obviously they were sorry to see their mate injured - but they had a fantastic attitude,'' he said.

''Their team building experience turned into a real thing in the end.''


The Dominion Post