Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - August 29th, 2014

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

French Prime Minister calls on ECB to go further to help economy

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

South Africa: Four men guilty of shooting Rwandan exile

Read more

WEB NEWS

France: fighting political corruption with transparency

Read more

WEB NEWS

Using the web to further the cause: ISIS vs USA

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

  • Iraqi forces free Armeli in biggest victory over IS militants since June

    Read more

  • Anti-government protesters storm Pakistan's state TV

    Read more

  • PSG trounce Saint-Etienne 5-0 with Ibrahimovic hat trick

    Read more

  • Putin calls for 'statehood' talks on eastern Ukraine

    Read more

  • Rescue efforts under way after French apartment block blast

    Read more

  • Poland marks 75 years since German invasion of WWII

    Read more

  • Israel appropriates large tracts of West Bank land

    Read more

  • Tension rises in Hong Kong as Beijing rejects open elections

    Read more

  • French police stop 'teenage jihadist' from flying to Syria

    Read more

  • Kidnapped Yazidi women 'sold to Islamists' in Syria

    Read more

  • Confusion reigns after Lesotho 'coup'

    Read more

  • France's Simon beats Ferrer to advance to last 16 in US Open

    Read more

  • French PM vows to safeguard 35-hour work week

    Read more

  • Inside Novoazovsk – the pro-Russians' latest conquest

    Read more

  • Filipino UN troops escape Islamists in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • Fugitive British killer returns to French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

Americas

Mid-air collision leaves nine dead in New York

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-08-09

A tour helicopter with Italian tourists aboard collided Saturday in mid-air with a small plane over New York crashing into the Hudson River, leaving nine people dead.

REUTERS - Nine people, including five Italian tourists, were killed on Saturday when a small plane clipped a helicopter over New York and both aircraft plunged into the Hudson River.

 

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said there were five Italian tourists and a pilot aboard the helicopter and three people on the plane including the pilot and a child. Three bodies had been recovered by nightfall and officials held out no hope of finding survivors.

 

"This has changed from a rescue to a recovery mission," Bloomberg said. "There's not going to be a happy ending."

 

Search and rescue craft rushed in vain to the crash area in the vicinity of West 14th Street in Lower Manhattan immediately after the collision at noon EDT (1600 GMT). The weather was clear and mild.

 

Bloomberg said the plane, a Piper Saratoga, appeared to hit the back of the helicopter, a Eurocopter AS350, which immediately broke up and fell into the river.

 

The helicopter was operated by Liberty Helicopter, the largest sightseeing helicopter operator in the U.S. Northeast.

 

Debbie Hersman, the chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board, said in a briefing the helicopter had been located and marked with buoys and investigators were using side-scanning radar to try to locate the aircraft.

 

The NTSB's 10-member investigation team suspended operations at nightfall and would resume the search on Sunday at 7 a.m. (1100 GMT), Hersman said. She said the team hoped to be able to remove the debris from the river on Sunday.

 

While the NTSB does not expect to find recording equipment in the wreckage because small aircraft are not required to carry them, Hersman said investigators expected to be able to determine the cause of the crash by interviewing air traffic controllers and reviewing air traffic control and radar data.

 

Hersman said another Liberty pilot had witnessed the crash. "He saw a small single-engine aircraft approaching from behind (the helicopter). ... He stated that he saw the right wing of the aircraft impact the helicopter."

An eyewitness told the NY1 local TV station he saw a wing come off the plane and the helicopter "fell like a stone" into the river. Others reported hearing a loud boom.

 

Chunks of debris also fell on the New Jersey side of the river, narrowly missing motorists.

 

In January, a US Airways jet with more than 150 people on board crashed into the frigid Hudson River off Manhattan after apparently hitting a flock of geese. All aboard survived.

 

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association reports there have been 70 midair collisions involving 140 aircraft in the United States over the last 10 years. There were fatalities aboard 83 of those aircraft.

 

Bruce Landsberg, president of the AOPA Air Safety Foundation, said in a statement that "we should avoid speculating about who did what or who is at fault until the (NTSB) investigation has run its course."

Date created : 2009-08-09

COMMENT(S)