June 10 (UPI) — A helicopter made a hard landing on top of a high-rise building in Manhattan on Monday, leaving the pilot dead, local emergency officials said.
The New York City Fire Department described the incident as a “crash landing,” and Gov. Andrew Cuomo said it’s unclear what caused the helicopter to make the forced landing. He said no people inside the building were injured.
The incident caused a fire atop the the building at 787 Seventh Ave., and prompted evacuations, the governor said.
“People who were in the building said they felt the building shake,” he said. “The fire department believes the fire is under control.
FDNY said that though the fire was extinguished, firefighters were attempting to control leaking fuel from the aircraft.
“If you’re a New Yorker you have a level of PTSD from 9/11 and I remember that morning all too well,” Cuomo added. “So as soon as you hear an aircraft hit a building, I think my mind goes where every New Yorker’s mind goes.”
The crash landing occurred amid rain and fog throughout Manhattan.
City officials banned helicopter landings on top of buildings in Manhattan — except hospitals — in 1977 after a crash, aviation expert Miles O’Brien, told CNN.
The 51-story building is located in Midtown Manhattan between Times Square and Central Park. The New York Police Department closed West 51st Street and West 52nd Street between Sixth Avenue and Seventh Avenue.