Helicopter Crashes In Midtown Manhattan, Pilot Dies

The New York City Fire Department says the helicopter crash landed on the top of the tower, which isn't far from Rockefeller Center and Times Square.

By Ethan Harfenist
51 and 6

The New York City Fire Department says the pilot of a helicopter that crashed on a Manhattan skyscraper rooftop early Monday afternoon has died.

A fire department spokesperson said the helicopter crash-landed on the top of the tower, which isn't far from Rockefeller Center and Times Square.

It does not appear that anyone else was on board when the chopper made what authorities called a "hard landing" at around 2 p.m.

In a Monday afternoon Tweet, New York City Police Department spokespeople said, “There was a helicopter hard landing on the roof of 787 7th Avenue in Midtown Manhattan. Fire has been extinguished. Please continue to avoid the area.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo told reporters that a fire began when the aircraft hit, but it is under control. Cuomo said it shook the building. He said there are no reports of injuries of people in the tower.

The governor added that there was no indication of terrorism, according to the New York Times.

“If you’re a New Yorker, you have a level of PTSD, right, from 9/11,’’ Cuomo said, as quoted by the Times. “I remember that morning all too well.”

It was not immediately known what type of helicopter was involved.

Videos posted by onlookers showed emergency vehicles in the street, but no obvious damage to the skyscraper.

Andrew Heath, 37, was working on the fifth floor of the building where the helicopter crashed, the AXA Equitable Center.

“We heard an explosion — it sounded like a manhole cover had exploded,’’ he told the Times.. “I heard and felt it. It was like a thud. I was wondering if a really heavy truck was driving by, but it was a little too much.’’

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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