One dead in chopper crash

Last updated 14:18 20/03/2014

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Investigations are under way after a man died in a helicopter crash near Gisborne today.

The 53-year-old man was a passenger onboard the Gisborne Helicopters chopper. 

The 49-year-old pilot was taken to Gisborne Hospital, where he was in a stable condition in the intensive care unit this afternoon, a spokeswoman said.  

Gisborne's ECT Rescue Helicopter responded to the crash, which was in a forestry block on Paritu Rd, off SH2, a police spokeswoman said.

The crash happened about 10am. The helicopter was working at the site delivering supplies and equipment from one site to another for a controlled burn-off operation.

Police said the burn-off had not started when the helicopter crashed.

Senior Sergeant Lincoln Sycamore said there were a number of witnesses who were being spoken to.

The dead man's name would not be released until next of kin had been notified.

Eastern District Police spokeswoman Kris McGehan said the body was still at the scene and would be removed later today.

His name would be released tomorrow, after next of kin had been notified.

The Civil Aviation Authority was investigating and the wreckage would remain at the scene for that.

While the scene was not overly-remote, it was on a forestry block in rugged hills near Paritu Rd, off the Gisborne to Wairoa stretch of State Highway 2.

She could not comment on the cause of the crash or what the man who was killed had been doing on the helicopter.

Gisborne Helicopters refused to comment.

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