Cave rescue in Buchan

CFA crews were called to the Slocombes Cave Reserve in the middle of the night to rescue a man who had slipped into a sinkhole.


Crews were called to the incident at the Buchan Caves at 12.30am.

Traralgon Leading Firefighter and Rescue Commander Greg Fisher said the man was exploring the caves with a group of friends where he dropped his torch and, when going to retrieve it, slipped and dropped 15 metres into a sinkhole.

“The rescue was very complex due to the narrowness of the shaft. Technical Rescue crews were called from Morwell and Traralgon Police Search and Rescue to assist, along with the firefighters from the Lakes Entrance Fire Brigade,” Mr Fisher said.

When crews arrived on scene a local paramedic who had lowered himself into the sinkhole was assisting the patient.

“A rope technician from CFA and Police Search and Rescue were lowered to the floor of the cave and secured the patient onto a fall-safe stretcher,” he said.

“The patient was lifted from the cave with ropes and hands on lifting, crews placed at the top of the shaft played a pivotal role in completing the rescue.

“The incident was called under control at 4.18am.

“The patient was promptly transported to hospital after the rescue was complete around 8.00am this morning.

“Although the narrow shaft made the rescue complex, crews worked patiently and effectively to perform the rescue.

“All crews worked incredibly well together. It was a great combined effort from CFA, Victoria Police, Search & Rescue and Ambulance Victoria — and a good result.”

Victoria Police, Search and Rescue and Ambulance Victoria were on scene.

Five CFA vehicles from Lakes Entrance, Traralgon and Morwell brigades were in attendance.

Author: CFA Media