April 18 (UPI) — Military officials said one person was killed Monday after a U.S. Army helicopter crashed at a golf course south of Washington, D.C.
The Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk chopper went down at the Breton Bay Golf Course in Leonardtown, Md., just before 2 p.m., military officials said. The aircraft belonged to the U.S. Army and was based at Fort Belvoir, Va.
Fort Belvoir, home to the Army’s 12th Aviation Battalion and more than a dozen UH-60 Black Hawks, said three people were aboard the chopper when it made a “hard landing.”
A witness in the course’s pro shop said the helicopter was flying low and spinning before the crash, perhaps indicative of trouble with the tail rotor, which controls a helicopter’s horizontal movement.
“One of them was lagging behind the other two. It started spinning. At first we thought it was doing tricks,” witness Elizabeth Willing told The Bay Net.
“It disappeared behind the tree line, and then we heard a big bang,” witness Kat McCurdy added.
Leonardtown is 45 miles southeast of the nation’s capital.
The crash marks the second time in two weeks that a military aircraft crashed in the area. An F-16C jet crashed near Andrews Air Force Base on April 6. The pilot ejected safely.