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April 7, 2020
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Sarawaged Update: Latest Evacuation sees 15-year-old Girl Only Survivor Brought to Lae Today

By Lucy Kopana – EMTV News, Lae

A 15-year-old girl was the only survivor who was brought to Lae from Sarawaged today. She was amongst a group of fourteen people who started walking from Lae on Wednesday last week, including her older brother.

She said others turned back along the way however, she continued walking with her brother.

“My older brother and I kept walking and we spent three nights at Sarawaged.” By the time villagers found them, her brother had died.

Seven bodies were also recovered at Sarawaged this morning by Manolos Aviations Chief Pilot, Jurgen Ruh.

Mr. Ruh said they were informed last week Thursday that trekkers from Pindiu in Finschhafen had encountered problems. Mr. Ruh could not fly into the area until Saturday because of bad weather.

“We had to get a local guide to show us where the track was and where the deceased was…people mentioned that some people got lost on the track and information was they would make smoke once they see the helicopter.”

Twenty two survivors have already been found through this week and airlifted to Indagen and Lae, and eight bodies were recovered.

This morning, Mr. Ruh inserted a team of Manolos staff and a few locals to continue with the search.

So far, there has been no provincial government support from the authorities to assist with the search and rescue of these lost trekkers.

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