NEWS
08/01/2011 12:03 EDT | Updated 09/30/2011 05:12 EDT

Three people killed in helicopter crash north of Prince Rupert, B.C.

PRINCE RUPERT, B.C. - Three people are dead after a helicopter crashed Sunday north of Prince Rupert, B.C..

RCMP Corporal Dan Moskaluk said the Stewart RCMP detachment responded Sunday afternoon to a report of a helicopter crash on the Nelson Glacier in the northwest corner of the province.

"We have confirmed that the three souls on board are deceased as a result in the crash. It’s our understanding that there was a pilot on board with two clients and the purpose of the flight was for geological work that was being conducted in the area," Moskaluk said in a telephone interview with The Canadian Press.

The chopper was operated by Vancouver Island Helicopters.

Moskaluk said RCMP officers were flown to the crash site by another aircraft from Vancouver Island Helicopters.

He said the officers confirmed the three fatalities while photographing and surveying the site.

The names of the victims have not been released.

"The investigation continues on now to determine causal factors of the crash, which will be led by Transport Canada, with the assistance of the Stewart RCMP along with the BC Coroners Service," Moskaluk said.

He said it's not known what the weather conditions were at the time of the crash, or whether they were a factor.