Sunday 28 December 2014

Helicopter crashes into field on way to pick up newlyweds

Eoghan MacConnell

Published 02/08/2014 | 02:30

The scene in Kinnitty, Co Offaly, where a helicopter crashed close by to Kinnitty National School. Photograph: James Flynn/APX

A PILOT had a lucky escape when a helicopter crashed minutes before it was due to collect a newlywed couple.

It is thought the R 44 Raven helicopter may have clipped wires as it came in to land in a field beside Kinnitty National School, Co Offaly, yesterday.

The pilot, who is understood to be in his 50s and from the Roscrea area, escaped the accident shortly before 4pm almost completely unscathed.

He had been due to take the newlyweds Damien and Wendy Hussey from the landing site near the Church in Kinnitty to their wedding reception at a hotel Roscrea, Co Tipperary.

An eyewitness said: "It hit the overhead cables on the Kinnitty to Camdamstown Road just beside the school in Kinnitty.

"It caused the helicopter to just literally flip, hit the ground and practically break in two halves almost. The pilot was very lucky to get away."

The Air Accident Investigation Unit (AAIU) has launched an inquiry.

Irish Independent

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