Lonely Planet Writer

Gadgets alert rescuers abroad for NZ trampers

Two separate travellers were rescued while injured walking in New Zealand’s rugged terrain this week.

New Zealand's rugged landscapes.
New Zealand’s rugged landscapes. Image by Jocelyn Kinghorn / CC BY-SA 2.0

Both were well-equipped with emergency location beacons. However, each had brought their location devices with them from overseas, tripping an emergency distress signals in the UK and in the US respectively and an international effort to find them. The Leeds man was carrying a personal locator beacon registered to the United Kingdom which sent a distress signal to the UK Coastguard and New Zealand’s Rescue Coordination Centre. That agency then got in touch with the New Zealand.

Kiwi search and rescue team who were able to track the homing signal to the injured tramper. The second walker, a German tourist, was also rescued after his beacon sent out a 911 signal with GPS coordinates to the International Emergency Rescue Coordination Centre in Texas. The team contacted their Kiwi counterparts to find the man.

Read more: stuff.co.nz