FAA Reports History of Issues with Helicopter that Crash-Landed in Tampa, Florida
TAMPA, FL. – According to a news story reported online by fox5atlanta.com, the Federal Aviation Administration is reporting that the helicopter that crash-landed on a street in Tampa, Florida, might have had a history of issues. The crash killed a passenger in a vehicle, and investigators believe the aircraft might have been having mechanical trouble in the days prior.*
The FAA has confirmed that it has opened an investigation into the crash-landing of a Robinson R44 helicopter that occurred on April 4 in Tampa. The aircraft was reportedly experiencing mechanical issues before the crash during a flight on March 31. During that flight, the pilot, who was the only person on the helicopter, was able to land safely.
On the afternoon of April 4, however, the aircraft was not able to make a safe landing. It crash-landed onto 50th Street by Palm River after experiencing engine failure. The aircraft struck the ground then slid down the roadway. In the impact, a piece of the helicopter’s rotor broke loose and struck a pickup truck that was traveling on 50th Street.
Fox 5 reports that the rotor pierced a window of the pickup and killed a passenger inside. The victim was identified as a 70-year-old man from Plant City, Florida. The driver of the pickup, the son of the victim, was also injured, according to Fox 5.
The pilot of the helicopter and a passenger on the helicopter were not injured, Fox 5 says, though the pilot was transported to a local hospital for evaluation. The National Transportation Safety Board sent a team to the scene and is performing an investigation, as well. No further information has been reported at this time.
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