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The news chopper involved was a backup for the city’s ABC affiliate KOMO-TV.  In addition, the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration are looking into the cause of the crash.

SEATTLE — Two people died and one person was critically injured when a Seattle news station helicopter crashed Tuesday morning near the Space Needle.

KOMO 4 News in Seattle confirmed that a news helicopter used in a joint partnership between KOMO 4 and KING 5 News crashed just before 7:45 a.m. on Broad Street near the Space Needle. Three vehicles on the ground were also involved in the crash.

Seattle Fire Department officials said only the tail of the chopper remained, and damage to the vehicles on the ground was extensive.

Two people were killed in the crash, and a 38-year-old man in a car was taken to Harborview Medical Center with burns over 20 percent of his body. He remains in critical condition. Doctors said he has been moved to intensive care and will require surgery.

KOMO 4 News named the deceased as longtime photographer Bill Strothman, and helicopter operator Gary Pfitzner. The identity of the critically injured person was not immediately known.

Another woman in one of the cars on the ground walked away from the scene and walked to the Seattle Police Department’s West Precinct. Witnesses also spotted a man running from the crash, but he was found later without injuries.


Article and Picture Courtesy of KCPQ-TV Seattle

Seattle News Chopper Crash Claims Two Lives, Injures One  was originally published on