Bad weather hits New Zealand helicopter crash bodies recovery


Bad weather is hampering efforts to recover the bodies of seven people, four of them thought to be British tourists, who were killed in a helicopter crash in New Zealand.

The Britons died along with two Australian tourists and the pilot of the aircraft after it came down on Saturday morning into a crevasse on the Fox Glacier, on the country's South Island, officials said.

Efforts to reach the mangled wreckage high up on the ice on Sunday morning are being hampered by poor conditions.

A New Zealand Police spokesman said: "Recovery teams are on stand-by at Fox Glacier awaiting an opportunity to get to the site of yesterday's helicopter crash."

The helicopter crashed at around 11am local time (midnight GMT), with a picture released by police showing the crumpled remains of the aircraft stuck at the bottom of a wall of ice close to the top of the eight-mile (13km) glacier.

Reports in New Zealand identified the pilot as Mitch Gameren, 28, from Queenstown, believed to be an experienced flier. The names of the six passengers have yet to be released.

Helicopter trip company Alpine Adventures, which is based near the popular tourist attraction, confirmed its aircraft was involved in the incident, but a spokesman declined to comment further.