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Helicopter and hen’s party crash in tragic accidents

March 13, 2018 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Yesterday was a sombre day for aviation, with a tour company helicopter dramatically filmed coming down in New York’s East River in a disaster that killed everyone except the pilot, and in a separate incident, a private jet carrying a hen’s party crashing as it flew back home.

Both accidents happened on Sunday (local times), so yesterday Australian time. A helicopter crashed into the water off Manhattan in New York, killing all five passengers. The pilot managed to get free and survived.

Video shows the helicopter losing altitude as if it were landing normally. Instead, it landed in the chilly East River, its blades thumping into the water, then it tilted, capsized and began to sink. The short video clip shows the incident from two perspectives and conveys the shock of bystanders.

Emergency responders dived into the water in a bid to save passengers, who still had seatbelts fastened and who had to be cut out, New York Fire Department commissioner Daniel Nigro told a news conference.

Despite best efforts, two passengers were declared dead at the scene and three died in local hospitals.

The helicopter, a Eurocopter AS350 owned by Liberty Helicopters, was reported to be operating as a private charter to take photos. Liberty Helicopters says it is the only company licenced to fly within 1000 feet [305 metres] of the Statue of Liberty on all of its tours.

Instagram photo shows a participant in the ill-fated hen’s party, with the plane

MEANWHILE, a 28-year-old Turkish heiress and bride-to-be, Mina Basaran, was killed with her friends when the private plane bringing them home from her pre-wedding hen’s party in Dubai crashed into an Iranian mountainside during a snowstorm.

An official for Turkey’s transport ministry said the plane was owned by a private holding company of Basaran’s father, Turkish businessman Huseyin Basaran. It carried eight passengers and three crew, all of whom died.

Turkey’s private Dogan News Agency identified the plane as a Bombardier CL604. The black box flight recorder has been recovered.

ABC News quoted the head of the Turkish Red Crescent Kerem Kinik, who said the size of the plane, and the fact it was flying in snowy weather, meant there was “no chance” of any survivors.

It was the first fatal crash in Iran since last month, when an Iran Aseman Airlines ATR-72-212 flying from Tehran Mehrabad to Yasuj on a domestic flight with 60 passengers and six crew disappeared from radar near Dena Mountain and crashed, killing all aboard.

Written by Peter Needham

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