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Canterbury rescue personnel come together for SAR exercise

"Canterbury rescue personnel come together for SAR exercise"

65 Canterbury rescue personnel came together yesterday for a Search and Rescue exercise at the Christchurch Gondola.

The exercise yesterday evening involved teams from Christchurch Alpine and Cliff Rescue, Fire and Emergency NZ, Canterbury Civil Defence Emergency Management Group, LandSAR, Rec Cross, Amateur Radio Emergency Communications, and NZ Police.

During the three hour exercise 11 participants, including three children, were "rescued" from the gondola cars and lowered to the ground.

Senior Constable Paul Beaver says the weather conditions added another facet to the exercise.

"There were very strong winds that at times were close to the gondola's safe operating limits, which made the exercise feel even more realistic."

Once on the ground, some of the "casualties" had to be carried on stretchers down the steep terrain to safety. Finally, they were medically assessed, and had any welfare needs taken care of.

"To get everyone down safely, each team had to use their specialist skills, and the exercise was a great opportunity for the local rescue teams to practice working together," says Alpine and Cliff Rescue Team Leader Jason Tweedie.

"The exercies was a great success and we all enjoyed working together to achieve a common goal."


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