The Land Rover LifeFlight Special Mission helicopter has winched four people and two dogs to safety, after they became stuck at a flooded campsite, near Moree.
The rescue helicopter crew was tasked to the area, west of Pallamallawa, by the NSW State Emergency Service (NSW SES).
The four people, a man and woman who were camping together, and two men who were unknown to each other, raised the alarm this morning, after floodwater rose significantly overnight.
The Land Rover LifeFlight Special Mission helicopter flew to the scene, just before 11:30am (NSW time).
LifeFlight’s Critical Care Flight Paramedic was winched down to the scene, to assess the stranded campers.
Once it was determined no one was sick or injured, the rescue crew winched two people up to the chopper, seperately – one with a dog – and flew them back to Moree Airport.
The aircraft then returned to the flooded campsite, to collect the other two people and second dog.
The Land Rover LifeFlight aircrew was able to use a ‘child rescue capsule’ to winch the dogs – a pomeranian and a chihuahua – up to the chopper.
LifeFlight’s Critical Care Flight Paramedic, Aaron Hartle, said the group told him they had become acquainted at the campsite and were monitoring rainfall in the region, over the past few days.
“They knew it was raining and knew it was flooding, but had discussed the situation and thought they’d be okay.
“When they woke up this morning, the water was higher than knee deep, so the group contacted the NSW SES, as there was no way out,” Mr Hartle said.
The Land Rover LifeFlight Special Mission helicopter is usually based in Brisbane, but was tasked to Moree by Fire and Rescue NSW yesterday, to aid emergency services in their response to the unfolding flood crisis.