At least two people were killed Sunday night after a helicopter crashed into New York City's East River. There were a total of six people on board, according to Fox News.
Bystanders who witnessed the crash said that the helicopter quickly descended near the north end of Roosevelt Island which is between Manhattan and Queens just after 7 p.m.
The chopper's pilot was able to free himself, while three passengers were rescued from the frigid water; they are in critical condition, according to NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill. The two other passengers were declared dead at the scene.
Emergency responders, including divers and fire-rescue boats, were dispatched to search for any survivors. According to The United States Coast Guard's statement, one person was saved by a tugboat.
Several bystanders were able to catch the entire crash on camera:
“It almost looked like it was landing,” said Xinran Jiang, who lives on Roosevelt Island and watched from her bedroom window. “It wasn’t moving fast. We were curious where it was going to land. Then the next minute, it was diving into the river.”
The helicopter was a part of a Liberty Helicopters tour group. It was a private Eurocopter AS350 that crashed during a private photo shoot. Officials said that the temperatures were below 40 degrees.
While it is not clear as to what caused the crash, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) are currently investigating.
Please keep everyone in your prayers!
Photo Credit: The New York Times