A private charter helicopter hired for a photo shoot crashed into New York City’s East River on Sunday night, reported Bloomberg. The ill-fated copter reportedly flipped upside down in the water, killing all five passengers aboard. The pilot survived the incident as he was rescued by police and fire department divers.
“It took awhile for the divers to get these people out. They worked very quickly as fast as they could,” Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro said.
“It was a great tragedy that we had here.”
Video taken by a bystander and posted on Twitter shows the red helicopter land hard in the water and then capsize, its rotors slapping at the water.
Witnesses claimed to have seen the helicopter flying noisily before it suddenly went down into the water and quickly submerged.
A U.S Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman said the Eurocopter AS350 went down just after 7 p.m. The aircraft was owned by Liberty Helicopters, a company that offers both private charters and sightseeing tours popular with tourists.