Helicopter crash kills two in London...


Jan 24, 2007


Witnesses reported seeing a “massive ball of flames” and a deafening "explosion" after the helicopter plunged more than 700 feet to the ground amid suggestions that the crane warning lights were obscured by fog.

Authorities confirmed the two victims, the pilot, Captain Pete Barnes and a bystander, died at the scene while at least 13 casualties, were reported suffering minor injuries.

Sad incident this. Chopper pilot didn't see the lights on the crane atop of Vauxhall Tower, which is understandable based on this:



Describing the scene he said: 'It's a tragic scene of the wreckage of a carbonised helicopter and of course a great deal of damage done to an adjacent building. It doesn't take a great deal to imagine what could have happened had that helicopter crashed into a bus or a heavily occupied building.

'Obviously our thoughts are very much with those who have lost their lives, their families and all those who have been injured, but it is also true that it could have been much worse.'
He said that workers at the scene were now 'very confident' that the huge crane was now secure.

Eyewitness and mother-of-five Sharon Moore, who lives on the nearby Wyvil Estate, said: 'Usually I can see a red light on top of the cabin but today you couldn't see anything.

'I think it was because the building was covered by fog. Sometimes that happens all day and you wonder how they are meant to see.'
Ms Moore added that she saw the helicopter shaking from side to side, saying: 'We looked up and we heard firstly the helicopter, and one minute it was flying normally and the next it was being erratic.
'It was rocking and shaking from side to side and then it went straight into the arm of the crane.'

A nearby resident, who lives 800 metres from the tower, said that while he did see lights on top of the crane they were 'dim' in comparison to the standard.

In October James Harvard had reported to police that there were no lights showing on top of the crane at all, identifying it to the MPS Helicopter twitter page as a hazard.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...warning-light-London-tower.html#ixzz2IAYtsVLm
Not an excuse, there was some negligance somewhere here even if it is the rules regarding lighting up a crane on a building.
I read that there has to be a minimum of 150m clearance of the highest building for helicopter flight over London. Heli pilot error. I'm pretty sure all the control towers in the vicinity would alert small aircraft of this minimum height...