Glider wreckage to be removed after fatal crash

The wreckage of a glider that crashed on Wednesday, killing a Canterbury farmer, is to be removed from the crash site today.

Horotata farmer and keen recreational gliding pilot Michael John McKellow, 60, known as Joe, was flying his fixed-wing glider when it crashed into a slope on Snowy Top Mountain on Ribbonwood Station, near Omarama in the Mackenzie Basin.

Police said the glider had appeared to lose height rapidly before crashing into the slope.

Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) safety investigators Colin Grounsell and Matt Harris were flown into the crash site this morning and had now released the glider's wreckage to its owners. It was to be removed from the site this afternoon.

The CAA team would conduct interviews in Omarama today to conduct interviews, and will return to Wellington tomorrow.

A preliminary report would be completed within four weeks.