1 NEWS investigation: Police Eagle helicopter operated while overdue for maintenance checks

A 1 NEWS investigation has revealed the Police Eagle helicopter operated for a full week while overdue for its maintenance checks.

The Auckland-based helicopter was due for its 100 hour check – the equivalent of a motor vehicle Warrant of Fitness - on January 27 this year.

It was finally inspected on February 6 – eight days late.

The aircraft flew six of those eight days, including at night.

The Civil Aviation Authority says that while the inspections were late, they did not reveal airworthiness issues.

A spokesperson told 1 NEWS that the operator, aviation company Airwork, voluntarily reported to the CAA and its client, NZ Police, and carried out an audit of all its helicopters provided to police.

The incident earlier this year is not the first problem police have had with its helicopters.

Earlier checks revealed that some of the aircraft's parts did not match those listed on Airwork's official records.

The Civil Aviation Authority said they chose not to prosecute Airwork because the company operated in a reasonable manner.

"The CAA is aware of both these issues and is satisfied with the steps the operator has taken to investigate them and prevent reoccurrence."

CAA policy states they prefer not to take enforcement action against those who fully report details of accidents and incidents.

However, it's not just police who have had issues with Airwork.

A business which uses Airwork's helicopters for tourist rides has told 1 NEWS they have had similar problems with the company.

As a result, they were forced to ground a helicopter for a fortnight.

A spokesperson for Airwork said that it had nothing further to add to the comments already made by the Civil Aviation Authority and the police.

Airwork's website says "we pride ourselves as being a company with foundations strongly based on sound Safety and Quality principles".

- By Andrew Macfarlane

Not only will the helicopter catch criminals, it will also play a major role in search and rescue missions. Source: 1 NEWS



State Highway 1 in north Waikato closed in both directions after truck rolls, injuring driver

State Highway 1 has been closed in both directions after a truck rolled in Waikato this afternoon.

The incident occurred just south of Hampton Downs, north Waikato, at 2.45pm.

The truck driver reportedly received minor to moderate injuries. 

Southbound traffic have been advised to exit at Hampton Downs to Whangamarino Road, then on to Paddy Road before going back on State Highway 1, NZTA said on Twitter.

The reverse has been advised for northbound traffic.

Diversions are in place at Whangamarino Road and Hall Road.

Delays are expected and police thank motorists for their patience.

The road is expected to be closed for some time while a crane helps remove the truck.

The truck closed both directions of State Highway 1 in northern Waikato. Source: NZTA

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Pussy Riot members who stormed field during World Cup final sentenced to 15 days' jail

Two of the four protesters who barged onto the field at the World Cup final in Moscow have been sentenced to 15 days in jail.

The protesters, members of the Pussy Riot punk collective, ran onto the pitch at Luzhniki Stadium dressed as police officers during the second half of yesterday's match between France and Croatia.

Stewards pull a woman off the pitch after she stormed onto the field and interrupted the final match between France and Croatia at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, July 15, 2018. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
Stewards pull a woman off the pitch after she stormed onto the field and interrupted the final match between France and Croatia at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, July 15, 2018. Source: Associated Press

They called for the release of political prisoners and for more open political competition.

A court today sentenced Veronika Nikulshina and Olga Kuracheva after finding them guilty of violating the law on behavior of sports events spectators.

They were also banned from attending sports events for three years.

It was not immediately clear when the cases of the other two protesters would be decided.

Veronika Nikulshina and Olga Kuracheva ran on to Luzhniki Stadium pitch dressed as police officers. Source: Associated Press