Search parties have been sent out to find two children who had run away from a school camp _ but don't be too alarmed, it was all part of a training exercise.
The search and rescue mission was only an exercise but provided valuable training for volunteers.
Detective Sergeant John Wilson of the Rotorua police is also in charge of Search and Rescue, said police staff and volunteers were put through their paces when the annual exercise was held last weekend.
He said the exercise involved Rotorua police Search and Rescue Squad members and Land Search and Rescue
volunteers, including members of the Rotorua Mountain Bike Club.
Members of the Rotorua Amateur Radio Emergency Corps also took part.
Mr Wilson said the exercise was based around the scenario involving two children who had run away from a
school camp at the Okataina Outdoor Education Centre, near Lake Okataina.
"The weekend's activities began with a briefing about the scenario on Friday afternoon with those appointed to manage the search, and then planning their response for the next two days,'' he said.
"On Saturday morning the remainder of those involved met at the SAR Base for a full briefing before being organised into teams.''
Mr Wilson said the Rotorua-based BayTrust Rescue Helicopter was also on hand to help out as part of the exercise. The helicopter landed at the search and rescue base so a pre-flight briefing could be given to those being deployed by helicopter.
"The helicopter allowed for two of the search teams and a radio repeater to be inserted into the field utilising the
rescue helicopter winch. This provided operational winching practice for the helicopter crew, as well as the SAR personnel,'' Mr Wilson said.
"Once in the field the teams were tasked by the search management in an effort to contain and locate the lost children as quickly and efficiently as possible. The end result was that the lost parties were located on Sunday morning at about 9.30am.
"A debrief was held at the end of the exercise and it was agreed that significant lessons had been learnt, not that all had run smoothly, but that by mistakes being made during practice, valuable learning had taken place.''