News helicopter crashes, kills 2 in North Carolina

Southeast

In this image take with a drone, emergency personnel work at the scene of a helicopter crash on the side of Interstate 77 South in Charlotte, N.C., Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2022. Authorities said two people died. ( (Alex Slitz/The Charlotte Observer via AP)

(NewsNation) — A news helicopter crash Tuesday near Charlotte, North Carolina killed local WBTV meteorologist Jason Myers and pilot Chip Tayag, the station reported.

The crash happened in the early afternoon near Interstate 77, WBTV reported. The National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration is investigating.

Myers leaves behind his wife and their four children. Tayag, a pilot for more than 20 years, had worked with the station since 2017, according to the report.

“The WBTV family is grieving a terrible loss,” the station said in an official statement. “Our news helicopter Sky3 crashed mid-day Tuesday with two of our colleagues on board. Meteorologist Jason Myers and pilot Chip Tayag lost their lives. We are working to comfort their families in this difficult time. We appreciate the outpouring of support for our staff and your continued prayers for their families.”

No vehicles were involved in the crash, The Associated Press reported, citing police.

Preliminary witness accounts indicate that the pilot made some “diversionary” maneuvers and “tried to avoid injuring anyone else” and “probably saved some lives,” Johnny Jennings, chief of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, told reporters, according to the AP.

“And if that is truly the case, then that pilot is a hero in my eyes to make sure that the safety and security of those that were driving was not in jeopardy,” Jennings said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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