|News and media|
Westpac Waikato Air AmbulanceThe Westpac Waikato Air Ambulance helicopter was called out to Kawhia to retrieve a young man who fell down an embankment while hunting.
The helicopter was unable to locate a safe landing site close enough to the patient and had to drop off a paramedic, who trekked to the injured person, while the helicopter returned to Hamilton to pick up long-line gear and a long-line qualified crew.
While enroute to Hamilton, the helicopter was diverted to an urgent patient in the Karakariki Valley, west of Hamilton, where a group of trampers where swarmed by wasps. Although most of the trampers received multiple stings, only one had an anaphylactic response and fell unconscious.
Due to the thickness of the bush, coupled with the extreme confines of the valley in which she was located, long-lining or winching were not viable options, the woman had to be carried out via stretcher.
While the entire crew of the Westpac Waikato helicopter, including the pilot and a local man who volunteered to help, were trekking approximately 1/2 a kilometre into the Karakariki Valley, the Rotorua-based, Bay Trust Helicopter was called in to complete the recovery of the first patient near Kawhia.
Both call-outs were completed safely, with both patients being flown to Waikato Hospital for further assessment and treatment.
Date: 9 January 2009