One person was killed after a helicopter crash-landed on the roof of a 54-story building in midtown Manhattan. The crash sparked a fire which was extinguished within 30 minutes. Nobody in the building was injured. The pilot was the only person on board and was killed in the accident.
The Federal Aviation Administration issued a statement saying the aircraft was an Agusta A109E helicopter and that the pilot was not in contact with air traffic controllers at LaGuardia airport during the flight.
Pilots are required to notify air traffic controllers if they enter the airspace and officials are trying to determine why he was not in contact with them.
There was low visibility at the time due to thunderstorms in the area. The cloud ceiling was between 500 and 600 feet and it is likely that the top of the 752-foot building would have been covered by clouds. The FAA says that the poor weather caused a complete ground-stop at Newark airport and LaGuardia airport.
The airspace around the building was restricted due to its proximity to Trump Tower.There is no helipad on the roof of the building. Officials have said that the crash was not related to terrorism.
The FDNY shared photos of the mangled helicopter on Twitter.
According to NBC New York, the pilot was identified as Tim McCormack. He reportedly dropped off a passenger at the East 34th Steet heliport, and was returning to Linden Airport in New Jersey. It is unknown how he ended up flying across midtown Manhattan.
iHeartRadio's 710 WOR News obtained video footage of the helicopter flying near the water moments before the crash.
A bystander shared a video on Twitter of gray smoke pouring from the roof of the building.
"787 7th ave,
#midtown NYC. We’re 1 block south. 20 mins ago there was a loud sound like a too-low #helicopter & I looked up and saw sheet of flame on roof and then smoke. News reports saying helicopter/small plane crash onto roof which would be consistent with what I heard/saw."
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