Seattle News Chopper in Deadly Crash Was a Loaner

The TV news helicopter that crashed in Seattle Tuesday morning, killing two people on board and hurting a person on the ground, was a temporary loaner while the usual chopper was undergoing repairs, the ABC station that was operating it said Tuesday. ABC affiliate KOMO reported that longtime Emmy-winning photographer Bill Strothman and pilot Gary Pfitzner were killed in the crash near Seattle's Space Needle. A man who had pulled himself from one of three burning cars was taken to the hospital in critical condition before later being upgraded to serious, and two other people walked away from the scene without serious injuries. The Federal Aviation Administration said the chopper, a Eurocopter AS350-B2, had been taking off from a downtown helipad when it crashed. Sources told an NBC News expert that because there was a lot of construction equipment in the area, they believed it may have struck something.

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