3 tourists dead in US Grand Canyon chopper crash

Violet Powell
February 12, 2018

The helicopter was apparently on a tour at the time of the accident and went down at around 5:31 p.m. FAA officials say the helicopter was a Eurocopter EC130.

The Grand Canyon National Park in northern Arizona, April, 12, 2015.

According to ABC15, a dispatcher who is with the Hualapai Department of Emergency Services said three people were killed and four others have unknown injuries.

First responders had difficulty reaching the four survivors, Bradley said, noting, "It is too windy and it's dark and the area is very rugged".

Hualapai Nation Police Chief Francis Bradley said the survivors were taken to a Las Vegas hospital.

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"It's just frightful", witness Teddy Fujimoto said.

The names of the dead and injured were not immediately released.

The helicopter, which was carrying six passengers and one pilot, was operated by Papillion Airways, a tourism-based operation that bills itself as the "the world's largest aerial sightseeing company" with over 600,000 claimed annual passengers.

The crash will be investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration.

National Weather Service meteorologists in Flagstaff and Phoenix said wind conditions were an estimated 10 miles per hour with gusts of 20 miles per hour around the time of the crash. The pilot and five passengers died.

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