Nyc Helicopter Crash
October 5, 2011 by staff
The accident occurred shortly after taking off from the heliport on 34th Street about 3:30 pm yesterday, Bloomberg said. At least some of the five people on board are related to each other, he said. Two were taken to Bellevue Hospital and were in critical condition while the third was in critical condition at University Hospital in New York, said the mayor.
The dead woman was trapped in the inverted helicopter as it sank into the river, said Bloomberg. The pilot survived and was treated at the scene said.
“The pilot reported trouble keeping up, and tried to turn back, but crashed in the water just north of the runway,” Bloomberg told reporters at the scene. “Four of the five left on their own, the fifth was caught.”
Police officers and staff of the nearest emergency services rushed to the river and some jumped and rescued three of the passengers, said Bloomberg. A police dive team and firefighters emergency medical technicians arrived on the scene within minutes of the accident, the mayor said. Divers later recovered the body of the woman caught on.
Passengers may have included two British and two from Australia, said the mayor. The New York Times, quoting an official of the nameless city, identified three of the passengers and Paul Nicholson, is believed to be 71, his wife, Harriet Nicholson, believed to be 60, and daughter, Sonia Marra, 40. The Nicholson is said to live in Portugal. Marra and a fourth passenger, identified as a friend to 40, were from Australia, the newspaper said. It was not known immediately that the passengers died.
The response of police, firefighters and emergency workers “was all I could ask for,” said Bloomberg.
The helicopter was a Bell 206B, according to U.S. records Federal Aviation Administration. The owner is listed as Paul P. Dudley Linden, New Jersey, according to records.
The National Transportation Safety Board, which investigates aviation accidents, has sent a team to the scene, said the mayor.
Accidents involving helicopters killed an average of 53 people a year in the U.S. from 2005 to 2010, according to safety board records.
The most recent accident before today in New York involving a police helicopter that crashed in Jamaica Bay, near Brooklyn on September 22, 2010, after a mechanical failure, according to federal records. None of the six occupants were seriously injured.
A helicopter carrying five Italian tourists crashed into the Hudson River on August 8, 2009, after a small plane crashed. That incident left nine people dead.
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