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Search continues for missing German woman

Search continues for missing German woman

Police and search teams are continuing the search for German visitor Britta Kappel, who was reported missing from Christchurch on Tuesday [29 January].

Search and rescue personnel have been searching in the Bottle Lake Forest Park overnight and are continuing to sweep the area this morning.

Search coordinator Sergeant Tony Tully says around 20 staff are currently involved in the search, including police search and dog teams along with LandSAR volunteers.

The teams have been combing the forest on foot, in vehicles and on bikes. Major tracks in the forest have now been searched, Sergeant Tully says, with no sign of the missing woman to date.

The overnight search team has now been relieved, and the current personnel will remain in the area until 4pm this afternoon, at which team a fresh team will take over.

Police say they may bring in a helicopter later today to provide extra visibility over the search area, which extends from the forest through to the beach.

Police are also speaking to friends and acquaintances of the woman, and conducting background checks including examination of phone and bank records.

A flyer seeking information or sightings has been printed and is being circulated in the Bottle Lake, Burwood and nearby areas.

At this stage police say there is no indication of any suspicious circumstances in her disappearance.

Sergeant Tully says Police have concerns for her wellbeing as she is on medication, was only lightly clad and had limited food and water with her.

It is believed Ms Kappel went into the Bottle Lake forest area by bike late yesterday morning.

She is believed to have been in Christchurch for some months, and had been living in the New Brighton area. Friends of Ms Kappel have been in touch with her family in Germany.

Police are continuing to appeal for any information or sightings, particularly from people who may have been in Bottle Lake over the past 24 hours.

Britta Kappel is described as female, Caucasian, aged 30 years, 165cm (5ft 5in) tall, of slim build, with shoulder length black/brown hair and blue eyes.

She was last seen wearing black sport pants, blue sleeveless top, black running shoes and riding a black, blue and white Giant Boulder Mountain Bike.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Christchurch police on (03) 3637400.


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