A man who died in a helicopter crash after hitting a power line in Marlborough on Friday night has been named by police.

The pilot is believed to be Ian John Simcox, 65, from Blenheim, police said. Formal identification had not yet been completed, but Mr Simcox's family had been notified, police said.

His Robinson 44 helicopter crashed into the sea at French Pass, Marlborough, about 5.20pm on Friday.

Witnesses reported seeing the chopper hit a power line, which runs between D'Urville Island and the mainland.

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Mr Simcox owned the chopper involved in the crash, and had been in the area to work on his bach.

The pilot's body was recovered from the crash scene yesterday by police dive squad members.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) was investigating the crash, and the coroner had been notified, police said.