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Motorcyclist airlifted after accident

Grassroots Trust Rescue Helicopter [GTRH] and Wellington Free Ambulance [WFA] responded to an incident involving a motorcyclist on Mataikona Rd just east of Tīnui on Thursday.

“Mid-afternoon on April 25, GTRH was called to Mataikona Rd for a male in his 50s who has slipped on the sand while riding his motorcycle,” a spokesperson said.

“He sustained serious fracture injuries to his leg.

“The patient was transported to Palmerston North Hospital for further treatment.”

“WFA attended this incident, and one patient was transported to Palmerston North Regional Hospital in a moderate condition via helicopter,” a WFA spokesperson confirmed.

Resident Tom Ward witnessed the rescue.

“I was having a snooze, and I was woken up by the helicopter flying above,” Ward said.

“I saw the helicopter land at about 3.15pm and the ambulance arrived at a 3.27pm; this was on Mataikona Rd near Sandy Bay Dr.

“I couldn’t see the motorbike because some grass and tussocks were in the way, but I did see the man being wheeled on a stretcher into the chopper.

“The ambulance was also parked at an angle across the road to block traffic.”

He said the helicopter had to make a few attempts at landing because of the strong wind, which also caused it to “wobble a bit” when it took off again.

“We have spoken to the Pilot, and he has assured us that the conditions were windy; however, this did not affect their landing,” the GTRH spokesperson said.

“The helicopter needed to circle overhead to carefully assess the area below before attempting to land near the patient.”

A Met service spokesperson said that at both 3pm and 3.30pm the recorded mean windspeed was 55kph, with gusts reaching as high as 100 kph.

The spokesperson also said the wind was predominantly North-West.

Freddie Wilkie
Freddie Wilkie
Freddie Wilkie is a journalist at the Wairarapa Times-Age; originally moving from Christchurch, he is interested in housing stories as well as covering emergencies and crime.

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