Lost woman found safe and well

By BELINDA SCOTT

A WOMAN lost in rugged terrain north west of Dorrigo for more than two days was found yesterday.

NSW Police said 54-year-old Susan Sewell was found by stockmen working near the Guy Fawkes River National Park about 1pm yesterday.

The stockmen alerted search crews.

Safe Community Action Team (SCAT) ambulance officers with the assistance of Polair, airlifted Ms Sewell from her location and took her to the National Parks and Wildlife Service rest area for medical attention.

She was later taken to Dorrigo Hospital but is believed to be in a satisfactory condition.

Mrs Sewell was located about 15km south west of where she was last seen, at the Chaelundi Rest Area where she was camping.

She was found just hours before the bushland search was due to be called off.

Before being discovered by the stockmen, Mrs Sewell was last seen by her husband at the Chaelundi Rest Area campsite about 9am on Sunday (December 30) when she went for a walk in the Guy Fawkes River National Park, north-west of Dorrigo.

The couple are understood to be visitors to the Coffs Coast.

Police had planned to broaden their inquiries today, if the two-day search failed to locate the woman.

About 45 searchers including local police, SES volunteers, National Parks and Wildlife Service staff, police rescue, the Westpac Rescue helicopter, the Rural Fire Service and Polair were involved in the search, which resumed at first light yesterday.

It was conducted under difficult conditions in the wilderness area of gorges, and rocky outcrops.

An experienced bushwalker who has been in the area, but was not involved in the search, said that visibility in the area this week had been shocking at times, with pouring rain and a 'whiteout' due to fog.

It is known Mrs Sewell had connections in Queensland's Rockhampton area, as well as in Victoria.

There had been growing concern about Mrs Sewell because the 165cm (5ft 6in), tourist did not take any provisions with her on her walk and was known to have set off wearing only shorts and a T-shirt.



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