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Australian tourists rescued from Lake Tarawera

Lake Tarawera news

Two Australian tourists avoided a cold and wet night on the shores of Lake Tarawera thanks to the rescue efforts of Police Search and Rescue, LandSAR and Coastguard.

The rescue effort came after the pair, which included a man in his 70s, phoned family to say they were having difficulty on the trail – prompting the concerned family to seek assistance.

Senior Constable John Fredericksen said while the pair knew how long the track was, they didn’t realise it was one way and ended at a location that would require a boat ride to get back to the start.

And while the two were aware of the weather conditions, Senior Constable Fredericksen said they didn’t have adequate clothing.

Police were notified about 5pm and after it became clear they needed support to get back. After a few challenges with communication – including a lack of cellphone coverage – they established the pair were likely at Hot Water Beach.

Luckily the older man was able to shelter in a tent that a family had left behind, while the younger climbed the hill to get reception.

Alongside Coastguard, two Rotorua Police SAR members and two LandSAR members went to the area where the pair were, bringing them back to shore to be checked by St John and returned to family.

“A little wet but very happy for the assistance,” Senior Constable Fredericksen said.

“It’s a timely reminder for anyone planning a day walk or overnight hike to look at the Land Safety Code and follow the five simple rules to help stay safe.”

  • Choose the right trip for you – learn about the route and make sure you have the skills for it.
  • Understand the weather – it can change fast. Check the forecast and change your plans if needed.
  • Pack warm clothes and extra food – prepare for bad weather and an unexpected night out.
  • Share your plans and take ways to get help – telling a trusted person your trip details and taking a distress beacon can save your life.
  • Take care of yourself and each other – eat, drink and rest, stick with your group and make decisions together.

Image credit: Michael Rogers, CC BY-SA 3.0

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Source:NZ Police

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