Bell 206 helicopter hits NYC East River

It appears that the NYC East River is the new home of a Bell 206 helicopter that took off earlier today after launching from the pad it would normally take off from along the riverbank. This crash has claimed one life and injured four more, two of these passengers seriously injured. This chopper was a private vehicle and went into the water near 34th Street in Midtown Manhattan. At the moment it seems that the only known reason for the crash was a possible mechanical failure.

Helicopter above is same model, pictured here for illustration purposes

One woman was found in or around the crashed vehicle having passed some time in or near the initial crash, while two female passengers were taken to a nearby hospital, one in cardiac arrest, the other in respiratory arrest, while one other man was taken to another nearby hospital with unknown conditions. I must comment at this point that normally SlashGear wouldn't report on subject matter such as this, but in this case there may be friends or relatives of those in the vehicle that could be helped by this information – or at least your humble narrator feels this way, anyway.

The type of helicopter that hit the river and sunk was a Bell 206 Jet Ranger, one of the world's most popular helicopter models at the moment, first flown in January of 1966. These helicopters are known for their lightness and their maneuverability and are often used by Air Taxi services as well as television stations. The river is currently closed to commercial boating traffic.

[via CBS News]