Nine people are believed dead after a helicopter transporting them to a northern California wildfire crashed, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman said on Wednesday.
FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said on a recorded telephone message that another four aboard the helicopter were critically burned in the crash on Tuesday evening approximately 35 miles (56 km) northwest of Redding in remote terrain.
The helicopter, with a two-person crew and carrying 11 firefighters, crashed under unknown circumstances, Gregor said.
National Transportation Safety Board
Washington, DC 20594
August 6, 2008
NTSB LAUNCHES TEAM TO INVESTIGATE HELICOPTER CRASH IN
The National Transportation Safety Board has dispatched a Go
Team to investigate a helicopter crash in a remote wooded
area about 35 miles northwest of Redding, California. The
Sikorsky S-61N (N612AZ) operated by the U.S. Department of
Forestry, crashed at about 7:30 p.m. PDT last night during
takeoff. A post-crash fire ensued. Of the 13 people
reported to be on-board, four suffered serious injuries;
nine are unaccounted for and are presumed to be fatally