Tennessee – Two law enforcement officers were killed when a helicopter crashed in an area covered by woods before hitting the power lines.
According to the authorities, as the first responders tried to reach the location, the interstate lines were closed and the highway lanes were also shut down.
The State Department of Safety and Homeland Security confirmed the crash of the helicopter on Tuesday afternoon killing Detective Matt Blansett from the Marion County Sheriff’s Department and Patrol Sgt. Lee Russell from Tennessee Highway and Aviation Division.
An investigation has been started to find out the reason behind the crash under the supervision of Capt. Travis Plotzer of the Highway Patrol. Both the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration will be taking part in the investigation.
The Federal Aviation Administration stated that as per the first responders the crash occurred “under unknown circumstances.”
The helicopter known as Bell 206 rotorcraft “struck a power line and crashed in a wooded area on Aetna Mountain” stated the statement released by the Federal Aviation Administration.
The details revealed that the helicopter hit the power cables spread over the Aetna Mountain in the area of Whiteside, Tennessee which caused the lines to fall off across 24 Interstate.
An eyewitness Dan Hostetler stated that he saw a black helicopter coming down in circles, missing him narrowly and hitting the electric lines.
“It kind of dipped a little bit and waggled a little bit, then there was a bright flash of light and puff of smoke, and it hit one of the power lines that went across the highway, and sure enough the power lines started gliding down toward me and all I could think was it’s going to land on top of me,” said Hostetler. “I slammed on the brakes and stopped about two car lengths from the line.” The earliest investigation revealed that there was a malfunction problem in the helicopter that led to the fatal crash this Tuesday afternoon.