Injured pig hunter rescued from Opotiki bush

Publish Date
Sat, 26 May 2018, 3:27PM
An injured pig hunter gives his rescuers a thumbs up. Photo / Whakatane Search and Rescue)
An injured pig hunter gives his rescuers a thumbs up. Photo / Whakatane Search and Rescue)

Injured pig hunter rescued from Opotiki bush

Publish Date
Sat, 26 May 2018, 3:27PM

A hunter who was stuck with a broken ankle 100m down a ravine for hours gave his rescuers a thumbs up as he was carried on a stretcher, a photo taken at the scene shows.

The man fell down a bank and hurt himself while he and a hunting mate were carrying a pig during a hunting trip in dense bush about 14km up the Motu River near Opotiki.

He was rescued about midnight on Thursday after falling and hurting himself about 2.30pm on Wednesday.                         

Opotiki deputy chief fire officer Rob Sturdy told the Whakatane Beacon the skies were clear but it was freezing.

Police used slashers and chainsaws to clear a path so that search and rescue teams could reach him. They had to use ropes to get the stretcher the man was on from the river to the road.

The man's friend walked for more than an hour to get cellphone reception so he could call for help.

Senior Sergeant Mark van der Kley told the Whakatane Beacon the alarm was first raised with police about 3.45pm.

Emergency services and search and rescue personnel arrived just over an hour later.

Whakatane Land Search and Rescue co-ordinator Ray Walker told the Whakatane Beaconhis team was called in because a rescue chopper couldn't land due to poor weather.

Emergency services cut through dense bush to rescue injured pig hunter. Photo / Whakatane Search and Rescue
                       Emergency services cut through dense bush to rescue injured pig hunter. Photo / Whakatane Search and Rescue
Sturdy said rescuers used a Stokes basket and pulley system to winch the man to safety.

"They zig-zagged him up the hill."

A police 4WD vehicle was then used to transport him 3km to a waiting ambulance.

The man was taken to Whakatane Hospital.