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  1. #1
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    Nine dead in NZ plane crash incl 4 tourists


    Fox Glacier plane crash - nine dead
    BREAKING4:18 PM Saturday Sep 4, 2010


    Police have confirmed that nine people - a pilot, four locals and four overseas tourists - have been killed in a fiery plane crash in Fox Glacier this afternoon.

    Senior Sergeant Allyson Ealam of Greymouth Police Station said the four tourists were understood to be from Ireland, England, Germany and Australia.

    The pilot and four males who died were from Fox Glacier.

    The names of the deceased will be released tomorrow morning as next of kin are still being notified.

    Local residents reported hearing a loud bang shortly before the light aircraft, believed to be a skydiving plane, burst into flames this afternoon.

    Emergency services and police are still at the scene of the crash, which happened shortly before 1.30pm near the Fox Glacier airstrip.

    One News is reporting one survivor has been taken to Greymouth Hospital with minor injuries.

    The plane is believed to have been on a skydiving flight. A woman who answered the phone at Skydive New Zealand, the only skydiving company based at Fox Glacier, would not confirm or deny the plane was the company's.

    Local resident Dave Bentley said the plane was almost totally destroyed and there was no sign of life.

    "There were a few local people on board, it is going to hit the town pretty hard," he said, adding that eye witnesses had told him the plane went straight into the ground.

    Another local said they had been watching coverage of the Canterbury earthquake on television when they heard a bang and ran outside.

    "It was like a fireball and then there was big puffs of smoke going up... [the plane] was engulfed in flames immediately."

    A local cafe worker said the whole plane was burning: "I didn't see it go down but apparently it took up and just came spiralling down."

  2. #2
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    They aint having much luck in New Zealand, this was most likely the plane.



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    Nine dead in Fox Glacier plane crash
    Last updated 17:22 04/09/2010

    A fiery plane crash that killed nine people in Fox Glacier today happened just metres from the town's chief fire officer's house.

    The pilot, a local man, as well as four local men and four overseas tourists who had been about to go skydiving, died in the crash, which happened at the end of the runway at Fox Glacier Airport at 1.15pm.

    The four tourists were an 18-year-old Australian man, a 26-year-old man from Ireland, a 24-year-old man from England and a 23-year-old woman from Germany, Senior Sergeant Tim Crawford of Greymouth told AAP.

    John Sullivan, Fox Glacier's volunteer fire brigade's chief officer, watched the Fletcher FU24 crash from his home, about 50 metres from the crash site.

    "It burst into flames on impact, I didn't see any sign of smoke or fire before then," Mr Sullivan told NZPA tonight.

    "I ran straight out there and did a quick 360 around the whole thing, by that time it was in flames. I thought that maybe if someone had been thrown clear on impact or if they'd tried to jump out in the air then there might have been something I could have done, but looking around the whole area there was no sign of life."

    Mr Sullivan said the entire town would be affected by the tragedy.

    "It's a very small, close-knit community here, and everybody knew the guys involved apart from the tourists who were taking part in the skydiving," he said.

    Full story Nine dead in Fox Glacier plane crash - national | Stuff.co.nz

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog
    They aint having much luck in New Zealand, this was most likely the plane.
    It's never ceases to amaze me why people feel the need to jump out of a perfectly functioning aircraft.

    Another tragic loss of young lives.

  5. #5
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    It probably would have saved their lives if they had jumped, assuming they all had parachutes.

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    ^ barely made it off the ground


    Nine dead as plane crashes in fireball
    By GRANT BRYANT, KIRSTY JOHNSTON and CLIO FRANCIS
    Last updated 14:05 05/09/2010

    The Queenstown pilot at the controls of the plane that crashed at Fox Glacier yesterday, killing nine people, was a veteran skydive pilot with thousands of hours of experience, says a former employer.

    The accident happened when the plane, carrying a party of skydivers and clients from Skydive New Zealand, crashed in a ball of flames at the edge of the runway just after take-off at 1.15pm.


    The charred remains of the downed aircraft lie near the Fox Glacier airstrip.

    The dead have been named as:
    33-year-old Chaminda Senadhira from Queenstown, Director of Skydive New Zealand, 55-year-old Rod Miller, from Greymouth, skydive masters Adam Bennett, 47, from Motueka, Michael Suter, 32, from New Plymouth, Christopher McDonald, 62, from Mapua, tourists Patrick Byrne, 26, from County Wexford, Ireland, Glenn Bourke, 18, from Coburg, Victoria, Australia, Annita Kirsten, 23, from Germany, and Brad Coker, 24, from Farnborough, England.


    Glenn Bourke during his tour of New Zealand in the week before his death
    ....

    "What we do know at this stage was obviously the aircraft was taking off with a full compliment of jumpers...and that the aeroplane impacted on the ground very close to the runway itself."

    Full story: Nine dead as plane crashes in fireball - national | Stuff.co.nz

  7. #7
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    Sad.

    Strange accident, I wonder why it crashed like that with no warning.

  8. #8
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    It is sad Willy, but to your question, single engine planes are a high risk means of travel particularly at take off. Add to this the Fletcher was more than likely a plane built in the 70's.
    The plane was in this configuration supposed to be a 6 seater + 2 crew ?
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