2016 Smoky Mountains helicopter crash
On 4 April 2016, a Smoky Mountain Helicopters Bell 206 helicopter, carrying tourists for sightseeing, crashed at about 3:30 p.m local time near the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in eastern Tennessee, not far from Sevierville. Five people were confirmed killed. The tourist helicopter was destroyed by fire after the crash. The helicopter appeared to have come down the side of a mountain and crashed at the foot of it. The helicopter was described as mostly destroyed. At least two explosions were seen by witnesses, and they saw the pilot roll out of the burning helicopter onto the ground.
The victims were identified as pilot Jason Dahl (38), Michael Mastalez (21), Johna Morvant (49), and her two children, Peyton Rasmussen (22), and Parker Rasmussen (18).
The sound that the helicopter made was described as "not right". Investigators said the helicopter initially impacted trees near the top of a ridge, and then it came to rest in a wooded area near the bottom of the ridge. The main structure of the helicopter was all located at the main accident site, except that one of the two main rotor blades was separated and located about 20 ft (6.1 m) from the main wreckage. The cause of the accident will likely not be released until a year after the incident.
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