A pilot, two British visitors and a Sydney woman have been identified. As the four people killed. When two helicopters collided in an Australian tourist resort.
Helicopter collision in tourist center
Authorities say the death toll was not high in the two plane crashes operated by SeaWorld Helicopters. The pilot of the second helicopter was able to land on a sandy outcrop near. Main Beach on Australia’s Gold Coast on Monday afternoon, despite damage to the plane.
“Considering the damage to the front left side of the helicopter. Where the pilot sat, this is a remarkable achievement.” Said Angus Mitchell, chief commissioner of the Australian Transport Safety Bureau. Whose office is investigating the crash.
“So it’s very sad that four people lost their lives. And a lot of people are grieving this morning. We could have had a much worse situation here and it’s fantastic to be able to land a helicopter.”
The pilot who died, Ashley Jenkinson, had been chief pilot at SeaWorld Helicopters since 2019. And friends praised his mentorship and the support. He provided during the catastrophic flooding in Ballina, New South Wales, last year. The Gold Coast Bulletin reports that he is 40 and became a father in September.
His helicopter was in the air for less than 20 seconds. When it attempted to land a second SeaWorld helicopter.
Mitchell said the aircraft’s main rotor blades contact. The front cockpit of the descending helicopter.
“That itself led to the main rotor. And gearbox separating from that helicopter, which meant, unfortunately. It had no lift and it landed on the ground,” he said.
Investigators remain at the scene of the accident. But rising sea tides are making it difficult to collect evidence from the scene.
Mitchell said investigators wanted to identify. What was happening “in the cockpits” during the collision.
The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office said. It was assisting the families of the deceased 57-year-old British woman and. 65-year-old man who were on holiday in the Australian state of Queensland.
A British couple and two Australians were killed
The other passenger who died was a 36-year-old woman from the Sydney suburb of Glenmore Park.
Three passengers on the flight remain in hospital: A 10-year-old boy from Glenmore Park. In critical condition, a 33-year-old woman from Geelong in critical condition. And a 9-year-old boy from Victoria state in stable condition.
Passengers who landed from the helicopter included two couples in their 40s from New Zealand. And a 27-year-old woman from Western Australia. Three of the five passengers were hospitalized after being thrown into the glass.
Holidaymakers and people enjoying the water rushed to help emergency workers. When the accident happened near SeaWorld Marine Park during Australia’s peak summer holiday season.
Authorities have praised members of the public. Who rushed to help those aboard the helicopter.
“Our thoughts go out to all the people. . And their extended families. And saw the sight of those helicopters coming down. Especially the first responders,” Mitchell said.
Village Roadshow Theme Parks. Which owns SeaWorld Helicopters, said in a statement. Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese also expressed his “deepest condolences to those bereaved.”
“Shocked by news of horrific and tragic helicopter incident on Australia’s Gold Coast,” he wrote on social media.