Rescue test for cavers
A deep cave rescue exercise involving 100 people will take place this weekend beneath Takaka Hill.
It will involve Motueka doctor and caver Michael Brewer, who was rescued there from 400 metres underground after he was injured during a caving expedition in 2007.
Tomorrow morning rescuers will go into the Greenlink cave system, which is the third-longest cave in the country, at 27 kilometres long and 400m deep.
The exercise will be co-ordinated from the Motueka Search and Rescue base and will involve more than 80 cavers from around the country, police, and LandSar volunteers. It has funding from LandSar NZ and is being organised by members of the Nelson Speleology Group.
NZ Speleology cave search and rescue co-ordinator John Patterson said the aim was to test Search and Rescue procedures to successfully carry out an injured person. He said Dr Brewer had been involved in the planning and would be involved in the exercise. It is due to finish at midnight on Saturday, with a debriefing on Sunday.