Helicopter Slams Into Virginia Townhouses

'I just heard a loud 'bam' and the whole house was on fire'
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 9, 2018 12:17 AM CDT
Helicopter Slams Into Virginia Townhouses
Two firefighters walk out of an apartment building as authorities respond to an aviation crash at the structure, Sunday, July 8, 2018, in Williamsburg, Va.   (Nickolas Oatley/The Daily Press via AP)

At least one person was killed in a helicopter crash in a residential area in Virginia, authorities say. A 911 call came in Sunday before 5pm about an aircraft crashing into a residential structure in Williamsburg near Settlement Drive, Virginia State Police say. The crash caused a massive fire at a townhouse complex, police say. Neighbors tell the Daily Press that they heard sounds resembling a helicopter crash. The College of William and Mary in Williamsburg issued a tweet Sunday warning students of the crash and urging them to avoid the area around the school's Dillard Complex, the AP reports.

Peggy Weiss, who lives in the neighborhood, tells the Daily Press she saw a small, rickety helicopter crash between two buildings. Brook Sweeney, who lives across the street from a house on fire, says the whole house shook when the crash occurred. "I just heard a loud 'bam' and the whole house was on fire," Sweeney says. Donald Johnson tells the newspaper he was 10 feet away from the crash when it struck his apartment building. "I was downstairs on the first floor when that thing hit and I had never heard a noise like that in my life. I just walked out and looked and got out, I was afraid it would blow up." The FAA tweeted late Sunday that the pilot was the only person on board the R44 helicopter.

(Read more helicopter crash stories.)

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