The pilot of a helicopter that crashed into a dam in Queensland’s Scenic Rim has miraculously survived. Grant Schultz was collecting water from a dam in Tregony when the helicopter rolled upside down and started to fill with water. Schultz managed to escape by opening the rear door and swimming to safety.
Schultz revealed that he almost didn’t make it out, as there was only about four inches of air left at the top of the cabin. He tried unsuccessfully to open the driver’s door before finally prying open the rear door. Apart from a scratch on his forehead, Schultz escaped the crash without serious injury.
He credited his regular helicopter underwater escape training (HUET) for his survival. Schultz was taken to Toowoomba Base Hospital but was quickly released with minor injuries.
Meanwhile, Queensland is facing an unprecedented number of bushfires, with over 30 fires burning across the state. The hot temperatures, which reached 10 degrees above average, have contributed to the spread of fires. The Bureau of Meteorology reported that Thursday was the warmest September day in Queensland since 2017.
Residents are urged to stay indoors, monitor the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services’ website for updates, and be cautious of firefighters working in the area. While this week’s hotter days are abnormal, temperatures are expected to cool down soon as a south-easterly change arrives.
Coastal areas can expect regular temperatures to return before the weekend, while inland residents may face high temperatures until early next week. In north-western Queensland, the temperatures are expected to remain hot, with temperatures reaching around 37 to 38 degrees, well above average.
Despite the challenging conditions, Schultz considers himself lucky to have survived the helicopter crash and hopes for a quick resolution to the bushfire situation.