WELLINGTON, New Zealand, — Six tourists — four British and two Australian — and a New Zealand-native pilot died when their helicopter went down at Fox Glacier, a popular tourist site on the country’s South Island.
Authorities said the aircraft crashed in a crevasse on Saturday morning. Rescue teams reached the crash site but found no signs of survivors. The pilot was identified as Mitch Gameren, 28, who had nearly 3,000 hours of flying time, including as a safari operator in Botswana and a medevac pilot in Malaysia.
“He loved flying and flew many different aircraft including fixed wing but he also really loved fishing and hunting,” Gameren’s stepfather Kelly Bray said.
Officials said recovery will likely take days because the helicopter is located deep in the crevasse, about 2,500 feet up the glacier, and conditions are bad. The aircraft was from tour operator Alpine Adventures.