No New Zealanders were on board a helicopter which crash
landed in Antarctica early yesterday morning, it has been
The helicopter - chartered by the Australian Antarctic
Division - had three people on board when it was forced to
make an emergency landing.
Initial reports from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and
Trade last night suggested a New Zealander was on board;
however, that has since been discounted
"It has now been confirmed that all three on board a
helicopter that made an emergency landing in Antarctica were
Australians. No New Zealanders were on board," a spokeswoman
The helicopter landed 150 nautical miles from Davis station
while returning from a scientific mission to survey a penguin
colony near the Amery ice shelf, the Australian Antarctic
"The pilot and two passengers were injured in the incident.
The helicopter was travelling in tandem with a second
helicopter which immediately set down and assisted the
injured," the statement said.
"The pilot and a passenger on the second helicopter are
caring for the injured until additional medical support can
be flown to the area and a recovery operation mounted."
Rescuers were last night hoping a weather window would assist
with the recovery of those on board.
A Basler aircraft left Davis station yesterday afternoon
looking for viable landing areas for a Twin Otter aircraft
which it is hoped can establish a suitable staging point to
begin the transfer of the injured to Davis station, the
Reports from the incident site were that all crew members
were warm, sheltered and being closely monitored.
Communication was being maintained with Davis station.
"At this stage it is not known what caused the incident to
the helicopter, operated by Helicopter Resources, and
chartered by the Australian Antarctic Division."
- Brendan Manning of APNZ