2 Sep 2010

PNG crash survivor recovering in Townsville Hospital

10:28 pm on 2 September 2010

The only person to survive a plane crash in Papua New Guinea is recovering in a north Queensland hospital.

Kelby Cheyne, a 25-year-old New Zealander who is now an Australian resident living in Toowoomba, arrived in north Queensland on a chartered plane on Wednesday night and is being treated in Townsville Hospital for bruising and possible fractures.

Another New Zealander and three Australians died when the Trans Air jet crashed on Misima Island, about 200km off Papua New Guinea's southeast tip.

The New Zealand man who died has not been named, but he worked for international medical provider SOS International.

Witnesses say the plane overshot the runway in wet and windy weather, crashed into trees, and burst into flames.

Investigators from Australia are to help their counterparts from Papua New Guinea look into the possible causes of the crash.

Mr Cheyne's family say he could be released from hospital within days. In a statement on Thursday, they expressed concern for the families of those who died.

The family concluded by thanking everyone for their support, but requested privacy.