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-   -   Three killed in South Australia Helicopter crash (https://www.pprune.org/rotorheads/461136-three-killed-south-australia-helicopter-crash.html)

Heliringer 18th Aug 2011 12:10

Three killed in South Australia Helicopter crash
 
Three killed in SA helicopter crash - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)


Three people have died in a helicopter crash at Lake Eyre in South Australia's far north.

A person at an outpost station reported the helicopter going up in flames on Thursday evening.

Police say the helicopter went down about 150 kilometres north-west of Marree.

An outback tour operator says four boats have gone to assist at the crash site near the Cooper Creek outlet.

The Australian Transport Safety Bureau is co-ordinating the response to the crash.
Herald Sun


THREE people have died in a helicopter crash at Lake Eyre.

William Creek pilot Trevor Wright said the he believed the helicopter was being used for aerial photography and video and flying near the edge of Lake Eyre when it crashed before 7.30pm.

He said the occupants were planning to land and meet a group of people on the edge of the lake for dinner in the early evening.

''When the helicopter didn't turn up they became anxious and sent out a search party on foot, then they found the wreck,'' Mr Wright said

He said news of the victims had spread around the William Creek community.

''Everyone in the local community knows about it and is distraught it's an aviation community,'' he said.

''It's incredibly upsetting for this to happen. We really feel for the families of the victims.''

The police helicopter is flying to the scene, which is 146km north north west of Marree and 142km north east of William Creek on the eastern side of Lake Eyre.
Three killed in Lake Eyre chopper crash while team was conducting aerial photography | News.com.au




THREE people have died in a helicopter crash beside Lake Eyre in South Australia.

William Creek pilot Trevor Wright said the he believed the helicopter was being used for aerial photography and video and flying near the edge of Lake Eyre when it crashed sometime yesterday before 7.30pm (CST).

An ABC spokesman meanwhile has confirmed there was an ABC crew working in a helicopter in that area.

Mr Wright, who could not confirm who the occupants were, said the crew was planning to land and meet a group of people on the edge of the lake for dinner in the early evening.

The site is 146km north north west of Marree and 142km north east of William Creek, on the eastern side of Lake Eyre.
"When the helicopter didn't turn up they became anxious and sent out a search party on foot, then they found the wreck," Mr Wright said

He said news of the victims had spread around the William Creek community.

"Everyone in the local community knows about it and is distraught it's an aviation community," he said.

Ground patrols and the police helicopter are making their way to the scene.

However, a police spokeswoman said the remote location and weather conditions were making it difficult to reach the site

Garfs 18th Aug 2011 14:33

Very sad indeed. I hear it happened near the Cooper inlet. Another sad day

onetrack 18th Aug 2011 15:13

South Australian Police are not expected to arrive at the crash location, because of its remoteness, and poor WX conditions, until 2:00AM, Central Australian Time. It's not stated whether this is a ground party or air party.

South Australia Police News

This is very sad news, and I think numerous people are awaiting the names of the victims with some trepidation.

Heliringer 18th Aug 2011 16:13

Do ABC have a helicopter based in SA or is this a local SA company on charter?

Journey to the Lake Country

CharlieOneSix 18th Aug 2011 16:55

The Australian has published the following online:


Early this morning the ABC confirmed that among the passengers on its chopper was journalist Paul Lockyer and cameraman John Bean.

The helicopter was being flown by Gary Ticehurst, the founder and principal of Film Helicopters Australia, who has been contracted to fly ABC staff since 1980.
Just awful.

RVDT 18th Aug 2011 18:43

More from "The Australian" 3 hours ago.

Hard to get the head around.


THE Australian Broadcasting Corporation fears that one of its helicopters crashed last night in South Australia's remote northeast, with grave concerns the three staff members on board have been killed.

South Australian police were this morning attempting to make their way to the site of the crash, which occurred east of Lake Eyre shortly after 7.30pm.

They confirmed three people died after the helicopter went down northwest of Marree and 140km north east of William Creek on the eastern side of Lake Eyre.

An ABC spokesman confirmed last night they had lost contact with a news crew that was filming at Lake Eyre.

"We have not been in contact with them," ABC communications director Mr Mick Millett said.

"We are deeply worried."

Police were unlikely to reach the crash site until early this morning and were being hampered by its remote location and bad weather conditions.

Early this morning the ABC confirmed that among the passengers on its chopper was journalist Paul Lockyer and cameraman John Bean.

The helicopter was being flown by Gary Ticehurst, the founder and principal of Film Helicopters Australia, who has been contracted to fly ABC staff since 1980.

His company is considered Australia's leading film and television aerial production specialist. Its website boasts that Ticehurst has "vast experience, flying helicopters for more than 30 years, and has more than 14,000 chopper hours supporting the film and television industry both in Australia and internationally".

"Film Helicopters Australia offers highly experienced pilots with the ability to carry out low level filming operations, provide aircraft ranging from helicopters to other specialist aircraft and co-ordinate and fly all and varied "on camera' aircraft sequences," it continues.

With more than 39 years' experience in journalism, Lockyer is one of the ABC's most experienced reporters. Corrigin-born, Lockyer started at the ABC's Perth office in 1969 where he did his ABC radio and TV news cadetship. From 1979, he spent the next nine years as a foreign correspondent in Jakarta, Bangkok and Washington and as the ABC's Asia Correspondent based in Singapore.

Lockyer was one of the first journalists to report on the full extent of the Khmer Rouge atrocities in Cambodia and the flight of boat people from Vietnam. He spent much time in the early 1980s covering the troubles in Central America.

After 11 years at the Nine Network in Sydney, he rejoined the ABC in 1999 as Olympics Reporter for TV News to cover the Sydney Games. His reporting efforts at the Olympics earned him a Logie award as most outstanding TV News Reporter in 2000. He later led the ABC TV News coverage of the Athens Olympics in 2004 and reported on the Beijing Olympics, in 2008, for The 7.30 Report.

Between the Olympics, Lockyer has provided extensive coverage of rural issues, particularly the extensive drought. Those efforts earned him a Centenary Medal in 2003 and he was twice awarded the NSW Farmers Mackellar Media prize for coverage of rural issues.

He spent much of 2005 presenting Western Australia's 7:00pm ABC TV news, before returning to Sydney to fulfil a number of presentation and reporting roles for ABC TV News and Current Affairs, including the dramatic rescue of two miners from Tasmania's Beaconsfield gold mine. Of late he has focused on rural issues, particularly the water crisis confronting the nation.

Cameraman Bean, based in Queensland, is also one of the ABC's most experienced hands with more than 22 years at the broadcaster. In that time he has worked in news and for 7.30, News 24, Landline, Australian Story, Catalyst, The New Inventors, Gardening Australia, Art Nation and for the Australia Network.

He also filmed documentaries Return To Lake Eyre and After The Deluge
http://resources2.news.com.au/images...-abc-crash.gif

R.OCKAPE 18th Aug 2011 19:51

RIP mate...

John Eacott 18th Aug 2011 20:03

Tragic: RIP, Gary.

mickjoebill 18th Aug 2011 20:13

As of 0500hrs EST, ABC TV news confirming crew as Paul Lockyer, John Bean and Gary Ticehurst as being killed, two bodies "found".

As of 0600EST (time of this posting) more tempered reports that three believed killed with police on scene saying they are not looking for survivors.


Two men were also killed in an ultralight crash in Queensland yesterday, (Aug 18th)
This follows two deaths on Monday during a fixed wing Angel Flight, truly a shocking week for Australian aviation community.


Do ABC have a helicopter based in SA or is this a local SA company on charter?
ABC reports say it was a Sydney based aircraft, they have used the Sydney based ABC AS355F2 VH-NTV, for shooting docs in the area in the last 18 months.

Shocking.
Local ABC Radio Adelaide have extended coverage and reports, link to live stream here
ABC Adelaide - Australian Broadcasting Corporation

ABC TV weather forecaster "not wanting to pre-empt any investigation":confused: says weather in the area was light winds light clouds at 3000ft with no storm activity.

Rex Ellis, an outback tour operator has given an interview on ABC radio. He spent the afternoon with the crew who were filming his outback tour. He says they took off from at 1900hrs. He says it was dark but weather was clear. (full moon was not yet up he says)
He says the aircraft took off, then circled them them went low and disappeared behind dunes, moments later there was glow. He says it didn't look like a normal flight.
They took to their boats and reached the crash site one hour later.

Cindy Mitchell is owner of the farm that the crew were enrout to, she said on ABC TV interview in response to a question regarding poor weather, "no the weather was fine".

Mickjoebill

Peter3127 18th Aug 2011 22:18

The consummate professional, and a great bloke
 
I did not know Gary but had the pleasure of meeting him on two occasions after the Sydney to Hobart of 1998 where his airmanship contributed greatly to the rescue of the survivors of the Winston Churchill. On both of those occasions Gary revealed himself to be a most engaging and humble man who was very generous of his time. He was of course the very definition of the professional rotary pilot.

Personally, it was meeting Gary that inspired me to learn to start the long process of saving to learn to fly helicopters. In a sad irony that training started this month. May he rest in peace.

Gin Rummy 19th Aug 2011 00:25

Sorry to hear this. Expected Gary to be around forever.

Nigel Osborn 19th Aug 2011 00:30

Third tragic accident this week. As the accident is said to have happened at 7.30 pm, I wonder if they flew into a big flock of large waterbirds that live there now the lake has water.

RIP

John Eacott 19th Aug 2011 00:50

Latest eyewitness report:


Journalist Paul Lockyer, pilot Gary Ticehurst, and cameraman John Bean are believed to have been killed in a helicopter crash in the far north of South Australia last night. Local tour operator Rex Ellis told 891 Breakfast he had just farewelled the trio when he said there appeared to be problems shortly after the helicopter's ascent.

The helicopter had taken off from Cooper Inlet, 140km north of Maree, when the problems occurred.
"It went pretty low, on the other side of the river, and then briefly went out of sight on the other side of the dunes and then we didn't hear anything."
Taking off just after 7:00pm, Rex said the chopper had circled and flew for less than a minute before it quickly descended.
"We just saw a glow and we realised something pretty bad had happened."
Rex and the other witnesses alerted the Royal Flying Doctor Service and the police as they quickly travelled across the river in boats.
"It took us about an hour to get to the scene, but it was too late to do anything for them."
ABC Managing Director Mark Scott said the team had been working on a news and feature project at the time of the accident.
He described the men as 'the best of the best' in their fields.
South Australian police have confirmed the location of two deceased persons in the wreckage of the crash, with the search continuing this morning to locate the third person believed to have been in the helicopter.
Mr Scott said police were not expecting survivors from the crash.
He said he had spoken with the families of the staff last night and expressed how much their husbands and fathers meant to the ABC, with his thoughts, love and prayers with the families.
SA Police said official confirmation of the names of those who died in the crash would not be made until later in the day.

John Eacott 19th Aug 2011 00:55

ABC obituary
 
For those who didn't know Gary, the ABC have his obituary, here.


http://www.abc.net.au/news/image/284...x2-700x467.jpg

Gary Ticehurst has been the ABCís lead helicopter pilot since the mid-1980s and is one of the most experienced media pilots in Australia.

In almost 40 years as a chopper pilot, Ticehurst logged more than 16,000 hours of flying time.

Ticehurst, who was 60, is survived by his wife Therese.

The Sydney to Hobart yacht race was a constant in Ticehurstís career with the ABC. Every year he brought stunning pictures to the ABCís TV audience and enabled radio reporters to close in on the action.

But during the tragic 1998 race, Ticehurst did more than just cover the race - he played a significant role in the rescue of 14 crew members from stricken yacht Business Post Naiad, which lost a skipper and crew member.

The yacht Stand Aside was the first to fall victim to the wild weather, with Ticehurst's chopper among the search and rescue crew.

"You could see the huge waves ... it was just an amazing sight," Ticehurst told CNN in a 2002 interview.

"I'm used to flying through weather fronts, but this was sitting like a whirlwind, and here was Stand Aside in the middle of this with half its roof missing," he said.

Six men died during the Sydney to Hobart, but a total of 55 were rescued.

Stephanie Hagger from Marine Search and Rescue remembers Garyís contribution vividly.

"Incredible man, big heart ... Garyís piloting during that [rescue] was incredible," she said.

The yachting community has also paid tribute to Ticehurst, describing him as a wonderful character and "fearless pilot".

"He made a great contribution to the Sydney to Hobart race and yachting in general, because of his ability to to get close and capture those moments of drama at sea," Sydney to Hobart spokesman Peter Campbell said.

"And of course, he played a vital role in the search and rescue in 1998 in the gale, he was out there spotting boats and relaying their position. Then again in the rescue of the upturned yacht Skandia, he was very much involved in that.

"He was instrumental in finding the positions of various yachts, he was out above the water in terrible conditions ... he did make a very important contribution by relaying messages and that sort of thing.

"He was an outgoing personality."

He was the embodiment of the hundreds of people who work so hard behind the scenes to bring ABC News to audiences across Australia.

His skill brought stories to life and while his efforts were invisible to the public, they were hugely valued by his colleagues.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/image/284...x2-700x467.jpg

Frontline 19th Aug 2011 01:13

Anyone have anything on ABC helo crash out on Lake Eyre?
 
Any info on helo crash? Understand ABC chartered aircraft out of Adelaide...

onetrack 19th Aug 2011 01:15

This is most certainly tragic news. Paul Lockyer, a member of the Lockyer families from the Corrigin wheat & sheep farming region, 220kms SE of Perth, W.A., came from a family line that were W.A. pioneers, farming pioneers, popular and well liked.
I am quite familiar with them, having ties with the Corrigin region via family and business, and having lived and worked in the area for many years. Max Lockyer, who I am pretty sure, was Pauls grandfather, was a pioneer on White Wells Station at Ninghan, and his son Ted moved to Corrigin to farm after WW2.
Max was a flight engineer during WW2, and typical of most country West Australians, was resourceful, independent, possessed great initiative, and was exceptionally skilled with mechanical ability.
Paul read the evening ABC news in Perth for many years, and was particularly well-liked.

White Wells Station history .. The Charles Darwin Reserve Community History - Australian Bush Heritage

I am also saddened to hear of the loss of the pilot and cameraman, neither of whom I knew, but it's obvious they were skilled veterans of their trades and also commanded respect, and were also well-liked. This is indeed a black week for aviation.

hkgmjq 19th Aug 2011 01:43

ABC news crew dead in helicopter crash

hoofie 19th Aug 2011 01:58

..and on the banner page underneath there is an advert for Lake Eyre flights - I know it's automatic but come on.:ugh:

FullOppositeRudder 19th Aug 2011 03:32

Any accident is a tragedy. This one especially so since the persons involved were widely known and respected throughout Australia, with long and distinguished careers in their respective fields.

Investigators head to ABC chopper crash site - Paul Lockyer, John Bean and Gary Ticehurst: Remembering three of the ABC's finest (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

It would appear that the machine involved was VH-HVT, but that is circumstantial. Reports suggest that the wreckage is spread over a wide area and that fire was involved. The site is also in a very remote location.

A sad day indeed.

Correction: The aircraft was not HVT but NTV. Apologies for the error. :sad:

lurker999 19th Aug 2011 03:43

the herald sun website has a pic and video of the crash site.

there isn't much left and what is left is very burnt.


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