One dead, three critical in Indonesian chopper crash

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Jakarta | Published: June 4, 2016 2:31:15 PM

A pilot was killed and three passengers critically wounded after a helicopter crashed in remote eastern Indonesia today, officials said, the latest accident...

A pilot was killed and three passengers critically wounded after a helicopter crashed in remote eastern Indonesia today, officials said, the latest accident to beset the country’s beleaguered aviation sector.

The Bell 206 helicopter of aircraft operator Amur went down in Paniai district, Papua province.

It was not immediately clear what caused the accident. Weather conditions were reported to be normal at the time.

“We have evacuated the passengers to the nearby city of Nabire so they could get medical treatment,” said Agus Rianto, a spokesman for Indonesia’s national police.

Papua,the easternmost province of Indonesia, is a remote, mountainous area and light aircraft are commonly used for transport in the province.

But the difficult terrain and bad weather have caused several accidents in recent years.

Last year, a plane from Trigana Air, a small domestic Indonesian airline, crashed killing 54 people on board.

The aviation sector in Indonesia is expanding due to economic growth, but it’s safety record is poor with a number of aviation accidents in the last couple of years, including the crash of an AirAsia plane in December with the loss of 162 lives.

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