On Friday morning, a helicopter crashed in Texas and caught fire, killing two people, including the pilot, authorities said.
The Federal Aviation Administration verified that there were just two passengers on board who died. The names of these people have not yet been made public.
According to WFAA, Dallas’s local television station, a helicopter crashed into a vacant lot near Rowland, Texas, about 11:30 a.m.
Aircraft video captured by a cellphone shows the white helicopter spiraling out of control in the blue sky. Suddenly, the plane’s blades begin to wobble and ultimately fall out of the shot.
Someone may be heard saying, “Jesus Christ!” in the video.
Another video was recorded on camera by a doorbell camera as the chopper came to a halt on the ground and erupted into flames.
The burned wreckage of the plane could be seen burning on the ground in images shot from media helicopters. Later, a tent was erected to demarcate the crash site.
Working at a neighboring repair shop, witness Joseph Kasper shared with WFAA that the chopper crashed around 40 feet from him.
According to Kasper, the tail rotor blade seemed to split off in mid-air, apparently, sending the helicopter plunging.
Several other witnesses have also claimed to have seen the tail dislodge from the chopper.
“I saw the helicopter coming down,” said Fabio Sanches Jelezoglo while talking to WFAA. “I heard a noise and when I looked up the helicopter was coming down and the tail was off.”
The reason for the accident is still unknown. The inquiry is being led by the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board.
Baum Hedlund Aristei & Goldman, a Los Angeles-based legal firm, says the Robinson R44 has a history of deadly mishaps. The firm has said that Robinson R44 has been linked to 561 accidents, out of which 203 were of a severe nature, causing 405 deaths.