TWO UK citizens were among four people killed in a mid-air crash between two helicopters on Australia’s Gold Coast.
The crash occurred around 2pm local time (4am GMT) on Monday in Main Beach.
Initial investigations indicate that the collision occurred when one helicopter was taking off and the other was landing near Sea world Drive.
One of the helicopters was able to safely land on the sandbank, with only five of its six passengers suffering minor injuries.
However, the other helicopter crashed, killing four of those inside, and leaving a further three critically injured.
The pilot and three passengers died at the scene, a pair travelling from the United Kingdom, including a 57-year-old woman and a 65-year-old man, and a 36-year-old Glenmore Park, New South Wales woman.
A 10-year-old boy also from Glenmore Park sustained critical injuries and was transported to the Gold Coast University Hospital where he remains in a critical condition.
Two people from this aircraft, including a 33-year-old woman and a 9-year-old boy both travelling from Geelong West, Victoria were transported to hospital with serious injuries.
The aircraft which landed on the Broadwater sandbank had six occupants, including the pilot, a 52-year-old Clontarf man.
The passengers included a 27-year-old Western Australia woman and two families from New Zealand who were travelling together, a 44-year-old man and 43-year-old woman from one family and a 48-year-old man and 45-year-old woman from the other.
One occupant from this aircraft was uninjured, with the remaining five people sustaining minor physical injuries.
Forensic Crash Unit investigations are continuing with assistance from the Australian Transport Safety Bureau.
Australia’s prime minister, Anthony Albanese, said his thoughts were with those affected by the incident.
“Australia is shocked by the news of the terrible and tragic helicopter incident today on the Gold Coast,” he said in a tweet.
“My thoughts are with all those affected, including first responders, and my deepest sympathies are with those who are grieving.”