LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3) -- News 3 had the only cameras rolling as the wreckage from last week’s fatal helicopter crash that killed five people was lifted from the ravine where it when down..
The National Transportation Safety Board says most of the aircraft was destroyed by fire, but the ntsb was able to recover a few crucial pieces. Officials are hoping that evidence will help give them some answers as to what exactly happened last Wednesday night.
It took a salvage team four separate trips to collect all the wreckage from the AS-350 helicopter of Sundance tours. The evidence is on its way to a warehouse in phoenix, where investigators - with the help of French aviation experts - will inspect it.
Investigators were able to recover the engine and rotors of the aircraft, which could now possibly be the most important pieces of evidence, since the aircraft had no black box onboard. The brand-new engine had just been replaced the day before the crash, after the helicopter underwent a routine 100-hour flight maintenance check.
The NTSB said in a press conference over the weekend that there is also a human element to the investigation – an interview with the wife 31-year-old pilot Landon Nield and six others who flew in the Sundance helicopter just before the crash . The interviews are being sealed from the public, but snippets of the interviews could be revealed in the NTSB’s preliminary report, which should be released on December 20.
The crash victims included newlyweds 28-year old Lovish Bhanot and 26-year-old Anupama Bhola, who were married November 6 in a large Hindu wedding in Gurgaon, India. The two were in Las Vegas on their honeymoon.
Two other victims, Delwin and Tammy Chapman of Utica, Kansas, were celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary. The tour was a gift from their children.
31-year old pilot Landon Nield leaves behind a wife and two step-children.