Helicopter pilot may have crash-landed 'to spare people on street'

  • Helicopter pilot may have crash-landed 'to spare people on street'

Helicopter pilot may have crash-landed 'to spare people on street'

With 15 years of experience flying helicopters and single-engine airplanes, he was certified as a flight instructor last year, according to Federal Aviation Administration records.

The rules require at least 4.8 kilometres of visibility and that the sky is clear of clouds for daytime flights.

Authorities expect the investigation into the cause of the crash will take 18-24 months; Bryan Llenas reports from New York City. At the same time, rain, fog and mist were all being reported.

The crash shook the 750-foot (229-metre) AXA Equitable building, sparked a fire and forced office workers to flee.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that there is "no indication" that terrorism was involved. Police say they haven't yet determined where the helicopter was headed when it the took off from the 34th Street heliport at about 1:32 p.m. U.S. Representative Carolyn Maloney, who represents parts of Manhattan, said she wanted all "nonessential" flights banned.

It wasn't immediately known by Monday evening if the helicopter had received permission to fly, he added. I do not know yet.

That trip would have taken the helicopter south, over the city's harbour and past the Statue of Liberty.

"If you witnessed Monday's helicopter crash in NYC, have video you shot of the crash or photos you took of the crash, NTSB investigators would like to hear from you", the NTSB tweeted Monday.

The helicopter hit the Manhattan tower about 11 minutes after taking off, in an area where flights aren't supposed to take place.

The wreckage atop the building is highly fragmented and much was consumed by the post-crash fire, Brazy said.

Democratic New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said there was no evidence the crash was terrorist-related and spoke about the unknowns surrounding the situation.

Brazy said McCormack did not contact air traffic control with his planned route of flight, and was not required to do so.

Asked if the weather may have played a factor, Brazy said "it is certainly one of the most interesting concerns we have".

"There was a moment in which we all couldn't get out of the building because we're all just backlogged in there", Aries said. In the press conference, Brazy said that the helicopter did not have any kind of flight data recorder, but that it's possible that McCormick tried to make radio calls during the flight.

Since the 58-year-old veteran pilot, a former volunteer fire chief in northern NY state, did not have an instrument rating, he was not qualified to fly through rain that enveloped Manhattan on Monday, officials said. He was chief of the East Clinton Volunteer Fire Department.

The helicopter's home base was an airport in Linden, New Jersey, where Paul Dudley, the airport manager, identified the pilot as Tim McCormack. It will be moved to a secure location for further examination, he said.

Investigators are searching for instruments that were aboard the helicopter that contain memory, Brazy said.