Helicopter rescue - 28 October 2013 - 5.45pm
DATE: 28 October 2013 TIME: 5.45pm
A rescue was carried out this afternoon to retrieve the passengers and pilots from an incident involving two helicopters, the Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand (RCCNZ) says.
“It appears a landing helicopter appears to have clipped a stationary helicopter on its descent to land near Tyndall Glacier near the head of the Shotover River shortly after 3pm this afternoon”, said Search Mission Coordinator Kevin Banaghan. A “MAYDAY” call was made at around 3.20pm and RCCNZ received an alert from one of the helicopter’s ELT. (Emergency Locator Transmitter).
Four rescue helicopters have worked together to retrieve an injured pilot and several uninjured passengers from the landing helicopter.
Eleven passengers with various minor injuries were uplifted and arrived back at Queenstown Airport shortly after 5pm. The injured pilot has been uplifted by a second helicopter with paramedics on board and returned to Queenstown Airport at around 5.15pm. The pilot is at Queenstown and will be transferred to Dunedin Hospital this evening. The extent of the pilot’s injuries is unknown.
RCCNZ would like to thank the rescue crews that responded.
The Civil Aviation Authority and TAIC have been informed of the incident.