Helicopter Crash at the Seattle Space Needle: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

News chopper crashNews Chopper Crash in Seattle2014-03-18T14:52:18.000Z

A news helicopter was attempting to land in Seattle when it tumbled from the roof of a news building close to Seattle’s iconic Space Needle, reports The Seattle Times. The fatal crash occurred just before 9 a.m. local time.

Here’s what you need to know:

1. 2 People Are Dead, According to SFD

The Seattle Fire Department have tweeted that two people were DOA in relation in the crash. A 37-year-old male was also reported to be in critical condition in relation to the crash. KOMO News reports that the dead men were both in the helicopter.

The critically injured man was taken to Harborview Medical Center. According to Tom Yazwinski of Fox Seattle, the injured man is suffering from excessive burns. A Seattle FD spokesman told the media that he is “clinging to life.” Another man was seen running from the scene with his sleeve on fire, reports KOMO News.

2. The Chopper Hit 2 Cars

The chopper crashed into two cars as it hurtled to the ground. Fox 8 reports, “The helicopter apparently made one full rotation after takeoff and then went down.” The station goes on to say that it may have hit a construction crane.

It happened on the 400 block of Broad Street at Fisher Plaza (above). The Seattle Times reports that the chopper slid off a building on Fisher Plaza.

3. The Chopper Was Leased to 2 Local TV Stations

The helicopter was the the news chopper for local TV stations, KOMO News and KING-5. The area where the crash occurred is where their chopper usually lands. KOMO is the local ABC affiliate in Seattle, KING is NBC.

According to KING-5, the chopper is managed by Helicopters Inc., known as Heli Inc. The company specifically leases helicopters to news organizations. Glenn Farley, a Seattle-based aviation reporter, told KING 5 that the chopper in the accident is new and the model is “extremely reliable.”

4. The Area Around the Space Needle is Closed

The Seattle Fire Department have closed off the area around the Needle due to the crash. According to KOMO News, firefighters put out the blaze in less than 30 minutes.

5. Former Pilot Said Attempted Take-Off ‘Not Easy’

Former KIRO-Seattle chopper pilot, Clark Stahl, told KOMO News that taking off from a rooftop in downtown Seattle is not easy.

There are no reports of a chopper making contact with the Space Needle. A dark plume of smoke can be seen for miles around the Seattle metropolitan area.

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