A contract helicopter working for the NSW Rural Fire Service has crashed into a dam while helping fight fires on the Far South Coast.
The waterbombing aircraft, tasked to the Clyde Mountain fire, ditched into Ben Boyd Reservoir in the Ben Boyd National Park at Edrom just after 4pm today.
The pilot was able to free himself from the wreckage but the aircraft remains submerged.
Ambulance crews are currently assisting.
Soaring temperatures and vigorous winds are forecast to fan another “significant spike” in bushfire conditions across NSW.
Bureau of Meteorology spokesman Grahame Reader says there are widespread forecasts of very high-to-severe NSW fire danger for Friday.
“After a relative respite in the weather this week we are expecting another significant spike in (fire) conditions,” he told reporters on Thursday.
“We will have hot and dry northwesterly winds and later in the day a vigorous southerly change will be moving through.
“Temperatures could reach the mid-40s in western NSW before the southerly moves through on Friday afternoon, Mr Reader said.
“Hot and dry conditions fan the fire behaviour. Of significant concern is the gusty southerly change moving through,” he said.
Bushfire weather across NSW is forecast to ease into the weekend.