11 September 2019

Woman rescued more than 17 hours after crash near Narooma

| Ian Campbell
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Rescued after 17 hours. Photo: Fire and Rescue NSW Facebook.

Rescued after 17 hours. Photo: Fire and Rescue NSW Facebook.

An extraordinary tale of survival with a woman from Benandarah north of Batemans Bay rescued from her car 17 hours after she was involved in a single-vehicle crash near Narooma.

While travelling between Moruya and Wallaga Lake, a Holden Trax SUV left the roadway and crashed into water sometime after 11 pm on Wednesday (June 5), trapping the female driver inside.

“We still haven’t accounted for how that happened but we are still making enquires,” says Chief Inspector Peter Volf, South Coast Police District.

What happens next is the twist in the story. Just before 4.30 pm yesterday (June 6), the trapped woman regained consciousness and was able to phone her daughter in law, however, she was unable to provide her location.

Officers from South Coast Police District commenced a search operation to locate the woman, with the assistance of NSW Ambulance, Fire & Rescue NSW, Moruya State Emergency Services, Narooma Volunteer Rescue Association, and the Dalmeny Rural Fire Service.

Within 20 minutes of using the mobile phone system, rescuers were able to pinpoint the women’s location – the Princes Highway at Kianga. Marks on the roadside guard rail were the final clue, police locating the Holden down an embankment in Kianga Creek.

Thankfully the car landed on its wheels after possibly overturning, “she is a very, very fortunate lady because she was down the embankment where no one could see her,” Chief Inspector Volf says.

“She was in good spirits, a remarkable effort.”

The woman in her late sixties was rescued from the vehicle and treated for suspected fractures and exposure. She was airlifted to Canberra Hospital in a stable condition.

“It was an amazing effort and well-coordinated, I am always proud of the police and the other emergency services.”

The 67-year-old women was airlifted to Canberra Hospital in a stable condition. Photo: Fire and Rescue NSW Facebook.

A women in her late sixties was airlifted to Canberra Hospital in a stable condition. Photo: Fire and Rescue NSW Facebook.

Anyone with information about the incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000.

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Graham Lapworth3:25 pm 07 Jun 19

The accident happened at the enterance to my property, a very dangerous spot, a very narrow bridge at Kianga Creek at the base of two hills. When I, or others, including logging trucks, pull out of Kianga Forest Road at the bridge there is limited visability of on comming traffic and you are faced with accellerating up a hill, either way, often with cars or trucks bearing down on you doing 100kms per hour and no where for them or you to go, especially trucks. The speed limit drops to 80 kms just south of the bridge, I would suggest moving the existing 80km speed signs north of the bridge ( say 300 metres from existing) to mittigate future and inevitable accidents.

Ian thank you for acknowledging that the Rfs was also actively involved. Not acknowledged by the abc or others.

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