Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Statement on Missing Aircraft from Antarctica New Zealand


28 January 2013 MEDIA STATEMENT

For Immediate Release

The wreckage of a Twin Otter aircraft that was reported missing last week in Antarctica has been found in a remote and mountainous area of the continent.

An initial assessment by Kenn Borek Air Ltd. of Calgary, Canada, the owner of the plane, deemed the crash “not survivable”.

The plane was flying in support of the Italian Antarctic Program under the logistical responsibility of the Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (ENEA), and was en route from NSF's Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station to the Italian research station at Terra Nova Bay when contact was lost.

The three-person crew were the only people aboard the plane at the time.

On the afternoon of Saturday 26th January a ski-equipped LC-130 aircraft operated by the New York Air National Guard for the U.S. Antarctic Program (USAP) overflew the last known position from the aircraft’s emergency location transmitter and spotted the aircraft’s tail at an estimated elevation of 3,900m (13,000ft) on Mt. Elizabeth, a 4480m high summit in the Queen Alexandra Range of the Transantarctic Mountains. A Twin Otter carrying U.S. and New Zealand search-and-rescue personnel conducted an aerial survey of the site a few hours later and determined that a landing by fixed-wing aircraft was not possible. Two helicopters--one flown by Southern Lakes Helicopters for Antarctica New Zealand and the other for the USAP by PHI, Inc. -- arrived at the small camp established roughly 50 kilometers from the crash location to support the operation.

Further reconnaissance was undertaken on the 27th January where field teams were able to be landed close to the crash site. Later that afternoon/early evening teams were able to recover some equipment from the exposed tail of the de Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otter, including the cockpit voice recorder, which should provide aviation authorities with more information about the cause of the crash. However, the team was unable to safely access and so recover the remains of the crew.

Officials with the U.S. Antarctic Program and Antarctica New Zealand have jointly decided to recall search-and-rescue teams from the site of an Antarctic aircraft crash after examination of the plane indicated that it would be unsafe at this point to further disturb the wreckage that is largely embedded in snow and ice on a steep mountain slope.

With the advent of the Antarctic winter, and the generally poor weather conditions at the crash site, any renewed effort to recover the remains will need to wait until the next Antarctic research season. The joint US/New Zealand rescue team will return to the National Science Foundation's McMurdo Station and Antarctica New Zealand's Scott Base later today.

Officials of the Italian Antarctic Program and Kenn Borek Air Ltd., the Calgary, Canada-based operator of the aircraft, have been advised of the decision to recall the team.

Our thoughts remain with all who have a connection to this dedicated crew, in particular their families and friends both in Antarctica and overseas.

Both the U.S. and New Zealand Antarctic Programmes extend their thanks to the New Zealand Rescue Coordination Centre for their immediate response and coordination of efforts.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

Werewolf: The Defence Pretence

Last year, the world began spending more money on weapons again, for the first time since 2011... New Zealand belongs to a region – Asia and Oceania – where military spending rose sharply in 2015, by 5.4 per cent. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Not Crying Foul, Argentina

So a couple of guys found to be criminally liable of environmental pollution in Argentina lodge an application with the Overseas Investment Office… in order to buy some prime New Zealand rural land. Seems that their factory back home had carelessly and/or intentionally discharged toxic waste into the Lujan river. Bummer... More>>

ALSO:

Urban & Rural: $303m To Merge And Modernise New Zealand’s Fire Services

Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne today announced funding of $303 million over five years to combine urban and rural fire services into one organisation from mid-2017. More>>

ALSO:

High Trust Regime: What Did The PM Tell His Lawyer About Foreign Trusts?

The Government stopped the IRD from reviewing New Zealand foreign trusts shortly after the Prime Minister’s lawyer wrote to the Revenue Minister claiming John Key had promised him the regime would not be changed. More>>

ALSO:

Road Crime: Wicked Campers Vans Classified As Objectionable

The definition of publication includes any "thing that has printed or impressed upon it, or otherwise shown upon it, 1 or more (or a combination of 1 or more) images, representations, signs, statements, or words", The Classification Office has previously classified such 'things' as billboards, t-shirts, and even a drink can. This is the first time the Classification Office has classified a vehicle. More>>

ALSO:

'When New' Repairs: Landmark EQC Settlement

The Earthquake Commission has cut a deal with 98 Canterbury homeowners that affirms the government entity's responsibility to repair earthquake-damaged property to a 'when new' state, as well as covering repairs for undamaged parts of a property and clarifying its position on cash settlement calculations. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Kiwirail’s Latest Stint In The Dogbox

The denigration of Kiwirail continues. The latest review (based on a 2014 assessment) of the options facing the company have enabled Kiwirail to be hung out to dry once again as a liability and burden on the taxpayer. More>>

ALSO:

Royal Society Report: Good Opportunities To Act Now On Climate Change

There are many actions New Zealand can and should take now to reduce the threat of climate change and transition to a low-carbon economy, a report released today by the Royal Society of New Zealand finds... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news