- The Diet Myth author Tim Spector, 59, and wife Veronique Bataille, 57, rescued
- A helicopter was taking them to the top of a mountain for them to go skiing
- Mr Spector said the chopper ‘tipped’ in the air before crashing to the ground
- The helicopter burst into flames, and the couple escaped the inferno unscathed
A British couple are lucky to be alive after they walked away from a helicopter crash in Georgia with just ‘cuts and bruises’.
The Diet Myth author Tim Spector, 59, and his wife Veronique Bataille, 57, a dermatologist, were rescued from the top of a mountain after their helicopter crashed and caught alight.
The pair, along with two other passengers, their guide and the pilot escaped the inferno with just minor injuries following the incident at around 10am local time today.
Prof Spector, who is in the top one per cent of cited scientists according to Thomspon-Reuters, told MailOnline: ‘It was terrifying and a but surreal but we are very lucky to be alive.’
The couple were in Georgia researching a new book that Tim is working on, and organised a few days of skiing at the end of the trip.
‘I don’t have any injuries,’ said Prof Spector. ‘Veronique bruised her knee,’ he added.
The couple were staying in the Marco Polo hotel in Gudauri, Georgia, just miles away from a resort where tourists were flung from a ski lift which malfunctioned last week.
It is thought the helicopter was operated by Kazbegi Helicopters and cost the couple around €300.
Prof Spector said: ‘Our tour guide recommended we do a few runs of heliskiing, so it was our first trip up the mountain. ‘We were getting dropped off but on the way down the helicopter tipped over. ‘It took us a while to get everyone out but we got everyone out safely and ran for our lives as far away as possible for fear that it might explode.’ The group had to hike through the snow down the mountain for phone reception where they could call for help.
He said: ‘We had to walk for 45 minutes down very steep snow slope to get phone reception because the base didn’t know we had crashed. ‘Another helicopter picked us up and took us back to the base.’ Now, the Spectors are recovering from the traumatic incident as the company investigate the crash.
The author added: ‘It is a surreal thought – that we have survived a helicopter crash. This feels like a second chance at life.’