Medicine

NZONE Skydive: Incident at Lake Wakatipu

NZONE Skydive: Incident at Lake Wakatipu

The accident happened on Wednesday afternoon.

Speaking to the Herald at his home near Wanaka last night, Ford was humble about his role.

He said the jump master from NZONE Skydive had been released from the hospital.

On hearing of the accident, Ford called Cecil Peak Station manager Philip Rive, who along with his wife sprung into action to help the stricken skydivers and rescue the instructor.

NZONE Skydive operates a commercial tandem skydiving operation in the area.

An NZONE spokesman told Stuff a "highly-experienced instructor, who had completed thousands of jumps" was finishing a tandem jump with a customer and landed in the water.

Lake Wakatipu, with Kelvin Heights in the background.

Whether this proves to be the case this time, only time will tell.

"It was a team effort". He said skydiving operations at the site had been voluntarily suspended until further notice.

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Rive said while he was pleased their efforts had helped save the instructor's life, he felt sympathy for the family of the missing tourist.

The Police National Dive Squad will arrive in nearby Queenstown during the weekend to assess conditions, as well as the viability of using sonar equipment to find Mr Nii's body, believed to be in a 250m deep section of the lake near Jack's Point.

"On behalf of the company, I would like to pass on my deepest sympathies to the family of the missing man".

He said the company would also undertake its own internal review of what happened, adding that staff had been offered counselling.

As we have seen with Ardent Leisure Group (ASX: AAD) and its Dreamworld theme park, events like this can weigh heavily on a company's performance for some time.

He confirmed the instructor had a GoPro video recorder on their wrist, which was now in police possession.

"We have now ascertained that this was a tandem jump involving two males". He met him yesterday before the man went to a yoga session.

However, taking a step back from this tragedy for a second, the market moved on from its previous incident reasonably quickly and presumed there to be limited impact to its business performance.

NZONE staff were assisting police and consular officials to try to contact the man's next of kin overseas.


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