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Rescue highlights importance of keeping Personal Locator Beacon close – police

Personal Locator Beacons news

Police want to remind people to carry your Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) on your person rather than in your pack or bag, so you have access to it when you need it.

A man hunting in the Kaimanawa Ranges yesterday was unable to signal for help when he was separated from his bag containing his beacon and other essential items.

Police responded to reports made yesterday morning of a man overdue from an afternoon hunt on Thursday (27 April) near Otupua Hut, south of Poronui Station.

The hunter had been unable to return to the hut after he sustained a knee injury and lost his bag containing his beacon.

‘He was forced to spend a night in the bush before his friend, who was at the hut, was able to signal to a helicopter that happened to be flying overhead,’ said Senior Constable Barry Shepherd.

‘Police were notified, and in the meantime the injured man had set a fire and the visible smoke led the helicopter pilot to his location.

‘That pilot was then able to transport Police to the vicinity of the man.

‘The Whangarei man was winched out by air ambulance and transported to Rotorua Hospital.

‘Beacons are a lifesaving tool which allow rescue teams to respond to your location as soon as possible.

‘If you are exploring the outdoors and are unable to make it out for any reason, or if you have concerns for someone else, please do not hesitate to activate your beacon.’

Remember to register your beacon with Rescue Coordination Centre NZ before you head out at beacons.org.nz.

For more information on beacons and how to stay safe while hunting see this link.

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Source:NZ Police

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