Three dead in mid-air sky­div­ing col­li­sion

Gulf News - - AUSTRALIA -

Three peo­ple died yes­ter­day in what is be­lieved to be a mid-air sky­div­ing col­li­sion, with one of the vic­tims found in some­one’s gar­den.

Two men in their 30s and a woman in her 50s were found dead at Mis­sion Beach, south of pop­u­lar tourist town Cairns, midafter­noon.

“Ini­tial in­ves­ti­ga­tions in­di­cate that a solo sky­diver may have col­lided with tan­dem sky­divers in mid-air with their para­chutes fail­ing to de­ploy cor­rectly,” po­lice said in a state­ment.

“Two men in their 30s and a woman in her 50s were lo­cated de­ceased at the scene.”

The Aus­tralian Broad­cast­ing Cor­po­ra­tion cited am­bu­lance of­fi­cials as say­ing one of them fell onto some­one’s lawn.

Found in gar­den

“We had a re­port of a sky­diver who had been found in the gar­den at a res­i­dence in Mis­sion Beach,” said Queens­land Am­bu­lance Ser­vice’s Neil Noble.

“Shortly there­after we re­ceived an­other re­port of an­other two sky­divers that’d been found close by.”

An un­named eye­wit­ness told the Cairns Post news­pa­per the mood in the town was som­bre as res­i­dents came to terms with what had hap­pened.

“I didn’t see any­one near them, but they were at a fairly high al­ti­tude so maybe a col­li­sion hap­pened fur­ther up,” he said. “You could see one chute was tan­gled and it wasn’t open­ing. I was just watch­ing him in free fall un­til he went be­hind the trees, and that was the last I saw.”

Sky­dive Aus­tralia said op­er­a­tions at Mis­sion Beach had been sus­pended while in­ves­ti­ga­tions were un­der­way.

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