Several people fear death after the collision of two US army helicopters in Kentucky
Several people are feared to have died in a collision between two US Army Black Hawk helicopters during a routine training exercise in Kentucky.
The crew members were flying two HH-60 Black Hawk helicopters, operated by the 101st Airborne Division, which crashed around 10 p.m. ET in Trigg County, Ky., a Fort Campbell spokesperson said.
The Fort Campbell base, located on the state border with Tennessee, 60 miles northwest of Nashville, is also home to the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment.
“Two helicopters came in quite low, and all of a sudden – as soon as they got over the house – something went off, a loud bang. And it all just stopped,” a local man told WKDZ Radio.
“So we jumped in the truck and got here, and this is what we found – two helicopters.”
The cause of the accident is currently under investigation.
The two helicopters reportedly crashed shortly before 10 p.m. Wednesday. Local media said several people are believed to have died
WKDZ, a local news station, photographed emergency responders putting out a fire
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said there was “difficult news from Fort Campbell” as “deaths were expected.”
He added that more information will be shared as it becomes available, and urged people to pray for those affected.
James Hughes, the Trigg County jailer, told radio station WKDZ he lived about half a mile away and heard what he believed to be a collision. He described hearing a “pop” and “two booms”.
Nondice Thurman, a spokesperson for Fort Campbell, confirmed the crashes happened before 10 p.m. Wednesday in Trigg County near Highway 68.
The planes were two Blackhawk helicopters operated by the 101st Airborne Division – the US Army’s only air assault division nicknamed the “Screaming Eagles”.
The crew members were flying the aircraft on a routine training mission when an “incident” occurred.
The East Golden Pond Fire Department arrived on the scene to extinguish the burning flames from the helicopter wreckage.
A US Army soldier at the scene confirmed to WKDZ radio that there were “several fatalities”.
In the early hours of the morning, the 101st Airborne Division tweeted: “We can confirm that two 101st aircraft were involved in an accident last night resulting in multiple casualties.
“At this time, our focus is on the soldiers and their families who were involved.”
Local news station WKDZ said the photo shows the wreckage of one of the helicopters
A Black Hawk helicopter is seen in action in Townsville, Australia, July 2016
The station reported that Trigg County Coroner John Mark Vinson was called to the scene.
Officials from Fort Campbell also arrived on the scene about an hour after the accident to conduct their investigation of the incident.
The HH-60 Black Hawk helicopter
The HH-60 is a variant of the Black Hawk helicopter designed to provide support for various military operations.
Its primary purpose is to conduct recovery missions in hostile environments, disaster response, as well as civilian search and rescue missions.
The US Air Force says the HH-60 is a highly modified version of the Army’s original Black Hawk helicopter.
Her onboard equipment includes an in-flight refueling probe, two .50 caliber machine guns and an 8,000-pound (3,600 kg) cargo hook.
The helicopter was used after the 2005 Hurricane Katrina disaster and the 2011 tsunami in Japan.
The Air Force says variants of the HH-60 are currently in use in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya.
The HH-60 Black Hawk helicopter would cost around $10.2 million, according to Executive Flyers.
Representatives of the U.S. Army Safety Investigation Team from Fort Rucker, Alabama, Combat Readiness Center are also expected to arrive at Fort Campbell to investigate the accident.
Residents told WKDZ radio they had heard helicopters hovering over the area in recent evenings.
Weather conditions at the time were clear with light to no wind.
“The command is currently focused on caring for service members and their families,” the base said in a statement.
The HH-60 is a variant of the Black Hawk helicopter designed to provide support for various military operations, including air assaults and medical evacuations, according to the US military.
In July, a $5 million helicopter training center, unique in the country, was opened on the site, with a seagoing vessel flight deck used ‘to facilitate safe and realistic training for crews and ground operators before operating in a harsh environment above water. “, said the army.
In February of this year, a UH-60 Alpha model Black Hawk helicopter flew completely unmanned for the first time, controlled from Fort Campbell.
The cause of Wednesday night’s crash is currently under investigation.
The US Army’s 101st Airborne Division was established in August 1942. It is the only air assault division of its type.
The group is renowned for its military professionalism and ability to execute combat and emergency missions around the world.
She is also known for her courage: “the division of tomorrow in today’s army”.
The division achieved fame during World War II during the D-Day landings and the Battle of the Bulge.
More recently, the group has been involved in multiple missions in Afghanistan and Iraq. He has also led NATO advise and assist missions as well as US counterterrorism operations around the world.
News development, check back for updates…
Fort Campbell is home to the Screaming Eagles, the US Army’s one and only air assault division.