Field staff hailed as heroes for helping injured chopper pilot

What started as a routine helicopter flight looking for damaged powerlines, turned into a rescue mission for two Ergon Energy Central Queensland field staff.

Blackall based live line workers Aubrey Carter and Peter Molle found a helicopter crash scene south west of Blackall last week while searching for the cause of a power interruption to the area, which turned out to be crashed chopper.

They used local knowledge and implemented emergency actions to help the injured pilot and directed emergency services to the remote accident scene.

“We came across the scene at about 3pm and it appeared the pilot had been thrown about four metres from the helicopter wreckage. He was conscious and there were no obvious signs of wounds or bleeding but he did tell us he could not move,” Mr Molle said.

Using a satellite phone they quickly alerted emergency services and an ambulance arrived about 2 hours later. The injured man was transported to Isisford and then flown by RFDS to Brisbane.

“He had been in the sun for almost five hours. We kept the sun off him, regularly moistened his lips with water and kept the ants away until the paramedics arrived,” Mr Molle added.

Acting chief executive Roslyn Baker praised the pair.

“Ergon Energy is extremely proud of them for their actions and commitment to the helping the injured pilot,” she said.

“Our crews work right across regional Queensland each day and periodically encounter accidents. They are trained in first aid and assist where they can.

“We couldn’t be more proud of all our crews and the assistance they provide the public in times of need.”

It was the third time this year Ergon staff have been involved in rescue work. In May two Townsville based staff resuscitated a heart attack victim on the beach at Bowen and in February a crew used equipment to lift a crashed vehicle off a woman near Lakeland in the far north.