PNG HELICOPTER CRASH LEFT 6 INJURED, PLANE DESTROYED
A helicopter crash at Gebrau in Madang on Saturday left six seriously injured including the pilot and the plane destroyed.
In a media release, the PNG Minister for Transport and Civil Aviation, Walter Schnaubelt announced that the helicopter accident was reported involving a Heli Solutions Ltd Bell 407 Helicopter, registered P2-HSN.
It was during a chartered passenger flight carrying 5 passengers from Sengapi to Gebrau Airstrip, about 80 km north of Mt. Hagen.
“It is reported that the helicopter departed Sengapi Airstrip at 03:02 pm and was on approach to land at Gebrau Airstrip at around 03:15 pm when the accident occurred. It has been confirmed that serious injuries were sustained by all persons onboard, and the aircraft was destroyed,” he said.
“I am informed that Heli Solutions Ltd subsequently conducted a rescue operation in coordination with Air Traffic Control but was unable to access the accident site due to deteriorating weather.
“It is reported that the nearby Gebrau villagers have assisted the pilot and passengers and have provided shelter in the meantime. Attempts for rescue are reported to recommence on Saturday morning. I expect all appropriate rescue and medivac efforts will be at the earliest.
The Accident Investigation Commission (AIC) was called and notified about the accident at 4:50 pm and has commenced an investigation (AIC REF: Investigation AIC 23-1006).
in accordance with Annex 13 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation, he said.
A team of investigators is set to be deployed to the accident site. There is not much known about the circumstances of the accident and the lead up at this point.
“As the AIC conducts investigations for the sole purpose of improving aviation safety, I expect that all parties will harmoniously cooperate and comply with the AIC investigation process,” said Minister Schnaubelt in a media statement.