Police to assist ATSB investigators at air tanker crash site – Snowy Mountains

Police will be working with investigators from the Air Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB), following the deaths of three men when a fire-fighting plane crashed in the Snowy Mountains yesterday.

About 1.15pm (Thursday 23 January 2020), emergency services were called to Peak View, about 50km north-east of Cooma, after contact was lost with an aircraft conducting fire-control operations in the area.

A short time later the wreckage of a Large Air Tanker aircraft was located on private property on Peak View Road.

Officers from Monaro Police District worked with Fire and Rescue NSW, NSW Rural Fire Service and Australian Defence Force personnel at the crash site.

Three men, aged 42, 43 and 45, are believed to have been on board at the time of the crash; however, they are yet to be formally identified.

Police are liaising with US authorities to ensure all next of kin have been notified of the men’s deaths.

Detectives from the NSW Police Force will be assisting ATSB investigators, who are expected to take over control of the site once it has been deemed safe by Fire and Rescue NSW’s HAZMAT.

They will conduct investigations into the circumstances surrounding the crash, while police will prepare a report the Coroner.

Motorists in the area are advised to check www.livetraffic.com for traffic diversions in the area.

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence.

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