A helicopter crashed into the Hudson River near Manhattan on Wednesday afternoon, New York authorities said. CBS New York reported that the chopper’s 34-year-old pilot is OK and was rescued from the water. He apparently only had a hand injury. There were no passengers on board. Officials said the helicopter had just refueled prior to the incident.
The Bell 206 helicopter crashed into the river shoreline around 2:30 p.m., the Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement. Investigators are responding to the crash site, the agency said.
A second person at the helipad suffered injuries, possibly from debris from the crash, and was treated at the scene, CBS New York said.
The helicopter is operated by Blade chopper service, which operates a shuttle service between Manhattan and local airports.
CBS New York points out that the pilot deployed floats along the helicopter’s landing skids which, when inflated, kept the helicopter from sinking in the water.
According the helicopter’s operator, the chopper was re-positioning and was not on a flight at the time.
“I was recording the helicopter taking off and it did like a spin,” Jack Lincoln of Middletown, New Jersey, told CBS New York. “I guess the wind caught it and it just went right into the river. It happened so quickly we couldn’t believe what happened, but everybody turned around and said a helicopter crashed.”
Officials said southband lanes of traffic have reopened on 12th Avenue between 42nd and 23rd Streets.
This story is developing. Please check back for updates.