A US Air Force Pave Hawk helicopter crashed in the coastal marshes of eastern England during a training mission on Tuesday night, killing all four crew members aboard, officials said.
The helicopter was flying from the nearby US air base at RAF Lakenheath when it went down on the north Norfolk coast.
"We can confirm that one of our HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopters went down outside Cley during a low-level flying exercise," a spokesman at the US base said.
"We are still piecing together details."
A Norfolk Police statement said there had been four fatalities and that a 400-metre (0.25 mile) area had been cordoned off.
The Lakenheath RAF base hosts US Air Force units and personnel and is home to Europe's only F-15 fighter wing.
The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) earlier revealed that it had been asked for three lifeboats to respond to reports that an aircraft may have ditched in the sea.
"Lifeboats Wells, Sheringham and Cromer were launched at the request of the coastguard but were stood down when it was confirmed that the aircraft had come down over land," said a spokesman.
Britain is suffering from a spell of stormy weather and high winds, but the west of the country has borne the brunt of the rough conditions, which have left seven people dead since the beginning of the Christmas period, while some 250,000 homes have suffered power cuts due to high winds.
(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS, AFP)
Date created : 2014-01-08