The incident occurred at an Australian tourist hotspot.
Four people have died and three are in a critical condition after two helicopters collided near a Sea World theme part on Australia’s Gold Coast.
Initial investigations into the crash suggest it occurred when one helicopter was landing and the other was taking off near Seaworld Drive, Main Beach, around 2pm, Queensland Police said.
According to police, one of the helicopters managed to successfully land on a sandbank.
Four people travelling in the crashed helicopter were declared deceased at the scene.
A further three people, who were also in the crashed aircraft, suffered critical injuries and were taken to hospital.
Six people were travelling inside the helicopter that landed safely.
Five of these suffered minor injuries and were taken to Gold Coast University Hospital, while one person was physically uninjured.
Four people have been killed after two helicopters crashed at Sea World on the Gold Coast.
The mid-air collision unfolding in front of hundreds of people in the themepark, and on the Broadwater.
— 9News Queensland (@9NewsQueensland) January 2, 2023
“Members of the public and police tried to remove the people, and they commenced first aid and tried to get those people to safety from an airframe that was upside down,” acting Inspector Gary Worrell of Queensland Police Service said at a news conference.
“[People on] jetskis, family boaters, ordinary members of the public rushed to assist these people.”
A witness told 9News Queensland that the accident happened “almost in slow motion”.
“One took off, a helicopter,” he said.
Another witness then added: “The other one was coming back into land and then it just clipped the back of it and then the other one just fell down.”
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk described the incident as “an unthinkable tragedy”.
“My deepest sympathies are with each of the families and everyone affected by this terrible accident,” she said in a statement.
The Seaworld Drive in Main Beach has been closed off due to the crash and motorists and pedestrians have been urged to avoid the area.
Forensic Crash Unit investigations are continuing with assistance from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.
What has happened on the Gold Coast today is an unthinkable tragedy. My deepest sympathies are with each of the families and everyone affected by this terrible accident.
— Annastacia Palaszczuk (@AnnastaciaMP) January 2, 2023
Main image via Twitter/9NewsQueensland
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