29 Oct 2013

Damaged helicopters taken to Wanaka

7:09 pm on 29 October 2013

Two helicopters damaged in a collision on the Tyndall Glacier have been removed to storage in Wanaka, following a site inspection by accident investigators.

One helicopter was trying to land beside the other at the glacier in Mount Aspiring National Park when it clipped the other helicopter and rolled on its side about 3.15pm on Monday.

Rescuers say the crash was a potentially fatal incident. Search mission coordinator Kevin Banaghan told Radio New Zealand's Morning Report programme on Tuesday the landing helicopter's pilot was seriously injured, but the others have only minor injuries.

The pilot of the landing helicopter is in Dunedin Hospital.

Investigators hope to interview some of the passengers involved on Tuesday evening and Wednesday.

They will also be gathering more detailed information about the accident flight and interviewing both pilots when the injured pilot is well enough.

Both aircraft are operated by the company Helicopter Line.