Helicopter Crashes In Midtown Manhattan, Killing One

by Chris Dong

A helicopter crash landed on a Midtown Manhattan skyscraper earlier this afternoon, killing one person. Officials confirmed that the only person onboard the helicopter was the pilot, who died after a hard landing atop a Manhattan office building.

The building was located in the heart of the city between West 51st and West 52nd streets, at the north end of Times Square. 787 Seventh Avenue does not have a helipad on its roof.

Weather conditions have been poor in New York, with rain and wind. At the time of the crash at around 1:45pm EST, there was a ground-stop at nearby LaGuardia Airport for thunderstorms.

Helicopters In New York City

The crash comes amidst a resurgence of sorts for helicopter transportation with companies like BLADE and soon, Uber, providing service to nearby airports from Manhattan.

Critics say helicopters are a major contributor of noise pollution and CO2 emissions, and the city would be better served by alternate public transport to make the JFK connection faster and easier.

Even before this incident, safety has been a major concern. This crash is just the most recent of several to happen within the last few years.

uber copter jfk

Uber is planning a new Copter service in July 2019

For decades, helicopters were off the radar for most people, and not just because it was out of range financially.

Back in 1977, five people were killed when the blade of a helicopter snapped off on the roof of what was then the Pan Am Building in Manhattan, next to Grand Central Terminal. After that incident, the heliport for the building was closed.

It is too soon to know what the impact of this incident will be on the future of helicopter transportation in New York City. At the very least, more people will pay close attention to the safety of operators.

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