The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has opened an inquiry into this afternoon’s (10 January 2018) aviation accident at Lake Wakatipu in Otago.
It is tracking the continuing search and rescue operation, and deploying two investigators, expected to arrive on the scene as soon as practicable on Thursday 11 January.
The circumstances reported are that during a commercial tandem skydive, where the passenger is attached to a ‘tandem master,’ a possible malfunction of the parachute has resulted in the pair entering Lake Wakatipu. The tandem master has been recovered from the lake and taken to Queenstown hospital with reported serious injuries. The passenger is still missing.
The Commission’s inquiry will seek to explain the circumstances and causes of the accident, with a view to helping prevent similar accidents in the future.
The Commission is unable to confirm further details of this afternoon’s events while the search and rescue operation continues.