Five injured after tree falls on group

A tree is believed to have fall on a group of people at Shotover Jet's base building

Five people have been injured, two critically, after a tree fell on a group of people at Queenstown’s Shotover Jet base.

A St John spokesman said three helicopters and multiple ambulances were in attendance.

Two people have been critically injured, one person was seriously injured, one person was moderately injured, and one person received minor injuries, he said.

One of the critically injured patients was being flown by helicopter to Dunedin Hospital, while the other four patients were being taken to Lakes District Hospital.

The ages and genders of the patients were not known, he said.

A police spokeswoman said emergency services were called to the Shotover Jet base building, on Arthurs Point Road, at 1pm.

Shotover Jet has issued an alert on its website saying that it is closed for the rest of the day.

Ngāi Tahu Tourism, which owns Shotover Jet, confirmed a tree had fallen on the bank of the Shotover River.

“Five people who were sitting under the tree have been injured.”

“The wellbeing of individuals is paramount and our focus is on supporting them, their whānau and our team.

“No further details can be provided at this stage.”

All were believed to be conscious and coherent and were being assess by emergency services staff and would be taken to hospital.

A person at the scene has described it as “absolute chaos”.

The man said three fire trucks, many police offices and a doctor were present.

He said a tree had come down near the building on a grassy area.

He estimated it was at least 50 metres tall.

A reporter at the scene said the tree, which was below the main base, had fallen over with is roots completely ripped out.

There were park benches below the tree and it had fallen directly on at least one of them.

The area had been swarmed with emergency services and one patient had been stretchered on to an Otago Rescue Helicopter.

It was “really windy” and gusts were blowing up dust across the site.

Staff at the base were visibly stressed.

The base had been completely locked-down, but a group of people coming back from a boat ride had been directed past the fallen tree.