Pilot killed after helicopter crashes on top of high-rise building in New York City
By Chaffin Mitchell, AccuWeather staff writer
June 11, 2019, 7:53:50 AM EDT
A helicopter attempting to make an emergency landing instead made a crash landing on the roof of a 54-story high-rise building in midtown Manhattan on Monday afternoon, killing the pilot, The Associated Press reported.
The pilot has been identified as Tim McCormack, 58, who was described as a "highly experienced" pilot by Paul Dudley, the Linden Airport manager.
The crash, which occurred around 1:45 p.m. EDT, sparked a fire when the helicopter hit the roof. The fire was extinguished within about 30 minutes, according to New York City's Fire Department (FDNY). Officials from the FDNY said the helicopter's pilot was killed in the crash. After the blaze was put out, firefighters worked to contain fuel that was leaking from the stricken aircraft.
"The firefighters had to deal with a fire well above the 50th story, which is extraordinarily difficult under any circumstance -- and in the middle of this weather. FDNY did an extraordinary job today," New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio told reporters at a press conference on Monday afternoon.
View down 51st St with fire trucks on the scene amid reports of a plane or helicopter crash in Midtown, Manhattan pic.twitter.com/vZxPvX1uJP— BOARD MAN GETS PAID (@FrancisOKC) June 10, 2019
It was a privately-owned helicopter that crashed 11 minutes after leaving a helipad on 34th street, said NYPD Commissioner James P. O'Neill in a press conference.
The NYPD required pedestrians and motorists to use alternate routes due to traffic closures in place from 42nd to 57th Streets between Eighth Avenue and Sixth Avenue in Manhattan.
"Weather could have been a factor as flying conditions were poor at the time," AccuWeather Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski said.
(AP / Mark Lennihan)
(Image via FDNY)
(Image via FDNY)
(Image via Dallin Wardrop)
"Around the time of the helicopter crash in New York City, conditions were overcast with widespread rain and visibility ranging between 1 and 3 miles. The base of the clouds was between 400 and 700 feet," Sosnowski added. The AXA Equitable Building stands at a height of 752 feet.
The crash landing occurred on the roof of the skyscraper at 787 Seventh Avenue, between 51st and 52nd Streets. The skyscraper is located right in the heart of Manhattan just blocks away from Rockefeller Center to the east and Times Square to the west. The area is a hub for tourists and is home to countless office buildings. The crash site is about a 6-minute walk from President Donald Trump's New York City apartment inside Trump Tower.
On Monday afternoon, the president posted a message to Twitter saying he was briefed on the crash and praising firefighters, police and medics who responded to the scene. He vowed that his administration "stands ready" for whatever the city may need in the wake of the tragedy.
I have been briefed on the helicopter crash in New York City. Phenomenal job by our GREAT First Responders who are currently on the scene. THANK YOU for all you do 24/7/365! The Trump Administration stands ready should you need anything at all.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 10, 2019
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo spoke to reporters at the scene shortly after the crash and addressed the jitters felt by many New Yorkers in the immediate aftermath of the accident.
“If you’re a New Yorker, you have a level of PTSD, right, from 9/11. And I remember that morning all too well," Cuomo said, according to the AP. "So as soon as you hear an aircraft hit a building, I think my mind goes where every New Yorker’s mind goes."
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said in a statement that the pilot was the only person aboard the helicopter when it crashed, and that FAA air traffic controllers did not handle this helicopter's flight. Investigation into the probable cause of the accident is ongoing from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).
When is the best bet for rain-free weather in northeastern US this week?
Southeastern US to face more flooding downpours but drought relief into midweek
Crane collapse amid severe weather leaves at least 1 dead in Dallas, 5 wounded
Due to emergency personnel presence, the New York City Police Department said that pedestrian and vehicle traffic is closed from 42nd to 57th streets between Eighth Avenue and Sixth Avenue.
Comments that don't add to the conversation may be automatically or manually removed by Facebook or AccuWeather. Profanity, personal attacks, and spam will not be tolerated.
More Weather News
Weather News - June 18, 2019, 2:38:50 PM EDT
Survivors recount their terrifying close encounter with an EF2 tornado that ripped through town in the span of 10 minutes.
Weather News - June 18, 2019, 2:41:02 PM EDT
A Danish researcher's striking image isn't exactly what it seems at first glance — and scientists say scenes like this could become all too common in the future.
Weather News - June 19, 2019, 2:53:53 AM EDT
Storms that erupt over the Florida Peninsula into Wednesday evening may pack a wallop in terms of rainfall and gusty winds.
Showers, thunderstorms to dampen early days at Royal Ascot; Will dry weather return for the weekend?
Weather News - June 18, 2019, 12:00:49 PM EDT
Wet weather will be a concern for those attending the Royal Ascot on Wednesday, but some improvement is expected later this week.
Weather News - June 19, 2019, 2:55:09 AM EDT
The caboose in a train of storm systems will travel from the Midwest to the Northeast with concentrated heavy rain and the potential for severe weather -- it will also usher in an end to the stormy pattern for a time.
Weather News - June 19, 2019, 1:28:44 AM EDT
A magnitude 6.4 earthquake struck off the coast of northwestern Japan late Tuesday night local time (around 9:22 a.m. EDT), the United States Geological Survey said.
Weather News - June 19, 2019, 12:26:09 AM EDT
India avoided a direct hit from former Tropical Cyclone Vayu; however, the northwest parts of the country will still be at risk for flash flooding into Wednesday.
Weather News - June 18, 2019, 9:33:52 AM EDT
Satellite images show things are relatively quiet now, but a cluster of showers and thunderstorms is expected to grow and eventually develop into a tropical system.