Dramatic Footage: Blackhawk Helicopter Plummets from the Sky, Killing All On Board
Two members of the Tennessee National Guard were killed Wednesday when the helicopter they were riding in tumbled from the sky and exploded in flames in Huntsville, Alabama.
The guard members were flying in a UH-60 Blackhawk Helicopter that went down around 3 p.m. near Highway 53 and Burwell Road, the Tennessee National Guard said in a news release Wednesday night.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of two Tennessee National Guardsmen, and our prayers are with their families during this heartbreaking tragedy,” Brig. Gen. Warner Ross, Tennessee’s adjutant general, said in a statement.
“We ask Tennesseans to join us in supporting their families during this time of unthinkable grief,” Ross said.
The release did not provide specifics on the unit involved or the names of those killed.
“It is premature to discuss possible causes of the crash. Like all military aircraft mishaps, the incident will be investigated. The National Guard will support law enforcement and other first responders handling the crash site,” National Guard representative Robert Carver said in a statement, according to ABC News.
Dramatic footage emerged of the helicopter’s fall before a massive column of thick back smoke emerged.
Two people are believed dead after a Tennessee National Guard helicopter crashed outside Huntsville, Alabama, at 3:01 p.m. Wednesday. A Nest camera appears to have captured the moment the aircraft went down. https://t.co/87ywtoQVHZ pic.twitter.com/sHryuTh4CN
— Tennessean (@Tennessean) February 16, 2023
The helicopter was engulfed in flames when first responders arrived, Don Webster, community relations director of Huntsville Emergency Medical Services, said, according to The Nashville Tennessean.
“It was destroyed beyond recognition,” Webster said.
Witness Tammy Adams recalled watching the disaster unfold.
“I just hollered, ‘My Lord! My God!’ Because nobody could have survived that,” Adams said, according to WAAY-TV in Huntsville.
“We heard a very loud — like a car without a muffler, but we knew it was in the sky. Looking up in the air, we saw the helicopter, and bam! We hear it hit. We saw it hit the ground, and it exploded,” Adams said.
Chermonika Johnson was inside her nearby house but heard the explosion.
“I started panicking, because I thought it was the school bus,” Johnson said.
She went outside and could not believe what she saw.
“You couldn’t even tell it was an aircraft. You couldn’t even see anything left of it but debris. There was nothing left at all,” she said.
A short video of the helicopter crash in Harvest (north of Huntsville) from Savanna Terry pic.twitter.com/v1T5vk4gq5
— James Spann (@spann) February 15, 2023
“Please join us in lifting their families up in prayer & support during this time of unspeakable grief,” Gov. Bill Lee tweeted.
Maria & I are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of two Tennessee National Guard members. Please join us in lifting their families up in prayer & support during this time of unspeakable grief.
— Gov. Bill Lee (@GovBillLee) February 16, 2023
The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the incident, according to CBS News.
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