Tuesday, 11 December, 2018

Dallas firefighter among 5 dead in NYC helicopter crash

At least 2 dead,1 rescued from crashed helicopter in New York City's East River New York helicopter crash: pilot reportedly blames bag after five die
Freda Brock | 14 March, 2018, 00:50

During a Monday news conference, National Transportation Safety Board member Bella Dinh-Zarr and investigator Todd Gunther said they'd never heard of a passenger tripping a cut-off switch.

"He was being instructed [to] look for the other helicopter because there was a mayday", Adams said. These made it hard for them to escape the stricken aircraft.

A floating crane slowly raised the submerged helicopter to the surface Monday and towed it off to be examined, as Democratic New York Sen. The FAA called it a Eurocopter AS350.

The company did not respond immediately to questions about the crash on Monday.

NTSB senior investigator Todd Gunther explained that while all of the helicopter's pontoons "had deployed" the critical issue is to determine "the sequence of events and did [the pontoons] deploy properly".

The company paid $23,576 in fines in 2010 and 2011 for violating maintenance, record-keeping and flight operations rules, the FAA said.

The helicopter was chartered from Liberty Helicopters, police said.

A bystander, Susan Larkin, told The Associated Press that she went down to see rescue boats in the river and a police helicopter circling overhead, hovering low over the water. Moment later, the aircraft flipped over.

The sixth occupant, pilot Richard Vance, 33, survived.

Divers were then dispatched to rescue the remaining passengers, all of whom were buckled in with harnesses and had to be cut out of the upside-down aircraft in 50 feet of water, New York City Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said Sunday.

Mayor Bill de Blasio, who was traveling from outside the city Sunday night, was briefed on the crash.

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A tourist from Argentina and two employees of Liberty Helicopters, the company running the tour, also died.

Trevor Cadigan and Brian McDaniel, both 26 years old, were capping off a weekend of sightseeing with the helicopter tour, according to Mr. Cadigan's father, Jerry Cadigan.

Until recently, Cadigan had worked as an intern with the news site Business Insider, which in a statement described him as a "smart, talented, and ambitious young journalist".

McDaniel was visiting Trevor Cadigan, a former Bishop Lynch High School classmate, in NY.

A video posted to Twitter showed the helicopter crashing down in the water, tipping over on its side as the rotors hit the water.

The five passengers trapped in a helicopter that ditched into the East River off NY on Sunday night may have died because they were wearing hard-to-remove harnesses.

As the investigation continues, McDaniel's tight-knit crew is grateful to the New York City Fire Department for keeping watch over their fallen brother.

He reported "an engine failure over the East River" and referenced a hotel, while the person at the other end of the transmission had trouble making out what the pilot was saying.

The helicopter went down near Gracie Mansion, the mayoral residence.

A pilot can free themselves by pulling one lever inside the aircraft, however the passengers all had harnesses that tied them inside with more than a usual seat belt since the group was on a photography mission with the doors removed.

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