New York: helicopter crashed into the East River
5 victims; the pilot safe -VIDEO
The pilot was saved, but not the 5 passengers of the AS-350B2 helicopter of Liberty Helicopters (registration N350LH) crashed yesterday at around 7pm local time in New York, USA. Responsible for the incident seems to have been a sudden drop in power that would have led the aircraft to make a sea landing in autorotation in the waters of the East River, in the Upper East Side of Manhattan.
The aircraft according to the statements of the head of the department of firefighters in New York, Daniel Nigro, sank at least 15 meters depth. Rescue passengers in a timely manner was made difficult by the fact that the occupants were tightly fastened with the seat belts in the cabin, and to free them the divers had to cut them working under water at an icy temperature below 4°, and fighting to the strait movements.
Two of the five passengers died on the impact. The other three were recovered and conducted in two hospitals in the area, where unfortunately they died, a local police spokesman reported it. According to the pilot, discharged in these hours, the bag of one of the passengers may have inadvertently touched the emergency button that stops the delivery of fuel, thus causing the accident.
The helicopter was engaged in a tourist flight on the Manhattan skyline. According to witnesses, while it flying at a too high speed, it began to descend too abruptly, "landing" on the water like a landing helipad on land. The rotor blades have broken; the aircraft began to tilt and sink, a couple of hundred meters north of Roosevelt Island. However, the pilot had time to get out and climb the top of the wreck, from where he drew the attention of several boats.
At that point the rescue operations were chaotic but by now the aircraft had sunk. Below, images of the incident, and the conversation between pilot and flight controller, in the report by "abcNews":
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