AIC investigates latest crash incident in Kiunga

The Accident Investigation Commission has confirmed that two people have been injured in the Kiunga helicopter accident, while the pilot escaped unharmed.

According to the AIC a passenger and a bystander were seriously injured when the helicopter crashed during takeoff.

Initial reports received by Loop PNG  on Wednesday stated that both passengers of the helicopter were injured.

However in a statement, AIC Chief Executive Officer, David Inau, corrected the initial report

“Shortly after 3.45pm on Wednesday they were notified of the accident. The Bell 407 helicopter, registered P2-HSE, operated by Nuigini Helicopters, was conducting charter operations for Digicel, moving passengers and equipment and fuel drums.”

“Initial information indicates that the accident flight was carrying at least one passenger (possibly 2) and was connected by a long line beneath the helicopter to a net containing fuel drums. The circumstances of the mixed load of passengers and fuel drums are unclear at this stage.

“There was one pilot who is believed to be uninjured. At least one occupant was admitted to Kiunga hospital, and there are reports of injuries sustained by a bystander from flying objects liberated from the helicopter during the impact. These are yet to be confirmed,” said Inau.

The AIC has dispatched two investigators to Kiunga to carry out an on-site investigation. Both investigators left yesterday.

Cedric Patjole