A man was reported missing near Combienbar in East Gippsland on Sunday 5 December 2010. Bush Search and Rescue were called to participate in the search with our first group of 14 departing Melbourne at 2:00am Monday 6 December 2010.
After two days of searching by Victoria Police, Bush Search and Rescue, the State Emergency Services and the Department of Sustainability, a second group of 15 Bush Search and Rescue members departed Melbourne 2am Wednesday 8 December 2010, bringing the total BSAR searchers to 29.
Bush Search and Rescue groups continued to conduct search tasks in and around the Tiger Snake Creek catchment. The earlier searching had provided valuable evidence of the missing man's movements, and on Wednesday afternoon he was finally found. After a Bush Search and Rescue party located him, four other Bush Search and Rescue parties nearby converged to provide first aid and support. Police Search and Rescue members also arrived with a stretcher and coordinated shifting the missing man, Peter, to a nearby location where he could be safely winched out by the Air Ambulance helicopter.
After the helicopter winched Peter out, the rescue party walked up a ridge to waiting vehicles for a ride back to search base. We were lucky with weather. It starting raining heavily just after all search groups had returned.
Peter's sister has passed on these thanks:
All the fantastic volunteers from Bush Search and Rescue Victoria are legends. You probably don't know this but the man you rescued from the dense bush outside Combienbar was my brother. Words cannot really express the gratitude my family has for you and all the volunteers who dropped everything at a moment's notice to go and search for Peter. Without the BSAR, the Police Search and Rescue, local Gippsland police, Police Operational Response Unit, SES and DSE all coordinating he would not have been found. But special thanks to BSAR because you actually found him. THANK YOU TO ALL THE MEMBERS FROM BSAR WHO WERE PART OF THE SEARCH AT COMBIENBAR.
All the best and heartfelt appreciation from Peter's family.
Some observations and tips
In general, if you become lost in the bush it is best to stay where you are and get or make some shelter
If possible, stay close to a clearing where you are more likely to be sighted by aircraft
Carry navigation equipment (map, compass, GPS) and know how to use them
Carry safety and communications equipment (Distress Beacon, radio, mobile phone) and know how to use thim
Bush Search and Rescue search team on days 1 and 2
Bush Search and Rescue search team on day 3
Peter Campbell, BSAR Convener, 10 Dec 2010