Man survives 15 metre waterfall plunge

CHARLEY MANN
Last updated 11:04 24/02/2013
Te Anau doctor Stephen Hosking waits for a Southern Lakes helicopter's longline to lift him with his patient from the bush, who fell down a waterfall on the Stockyard Track at Lake Manapouri.
Te Anau doctor Stephen Hosking waits for a Southern Lakes helicopter's longline to lift him with his patient from the bush, who fell down a waterfall on the Stockyard Track at Lake Manapouri.
The waterfall on Stockyard Track, Lake Manapouri,
The waterfall on Stockyard Track, Lake Manapouri,
A patient is lifted from the bush after falling down a waterfall on the Stockyard Track at Lake Manapouri.
A patient is lifted from the bush after falling down a waterfall on the Stockyard Track at Lake Manapouri.
A patient is lifted from the bush after falling down a waterfall on the Stockyard Track at Lake Manapouri.
A patient is lifted from the bush after falling down a waterfall on the Stockyard Track at Lake Manapouri.

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Police are ''very surprised'' a man has survived a 15-metre-fall off a waterfall, into shallow water.

The 49-year-old suffered moderate injures, including a broken elbow and foot, when he fell from a waterfall on Stockyard Track, Lake Manapouri, at 1.30pm yesterday.

He was part of a group that had boated across the lake in Fiordland National Park, and walked to the area above the waterfall.

His wife and friend alerted emergency services but were cut off by poor reception after a few moments.
Southern lakes search and rescue helicopter was sent to the scene from Te Anau and located the trio at the base of the falls.

A doctor and police search and rescue member were winched into the falls and stablished the man, before he was winched out and flown to Kew Hospital, Invercargill, with moderate injuries.

Sergeant Tod Hollebon of Te Anau police was very surprised that he had survived the drop, after seeing the height the man had fallen from.

"It was very fortunate given the height he did not suffer more severe or fatal injuries, quite incredible really,'' he said.

''He was in some pain and he was cold but appeared pleased to be heading to hospital."

Hollebon said the group were well equipped with communication devices including a radio in the boat; however they said they had an emergency locator beacon but forgotten to take it with them on this trip.

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- Fairfax Media

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