Tragic Helicopter Crash Claims Lives of 6ABC News Team Members in New Jersey

Tragic Helicopter Crash Claims Lives of 6ABC News Team Members in New Jersey

Identification of Victims:

In a devastating incident, the individuals who lost their lives in the 6ABC news helicopter crash in New Jersey have been identified as Pilot Monroe Smith, aged 67, and photographer Christopher Dougherty, aged 45.

Both men, deeply connected to the station, were part of the Action News team for several years.

Details of the Crash:

The helicopter went down around 8 pm near Quaker Bridge Atsion Road and Mullica Hill Road in Washington Township, crashing in a wooded area of Burlington County.

The aircraft had last been airborne over Wharton State Forest, recording a height of just 75 feet above the ground.

Due to the remote location, the crash site proved challenging to access, nestled deep within the woods.

Response and Investigation:

The New Jersey State Police and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) swiftly responded to the scene, sealing it off for investigation.

Low visibility prompted the suspension of the investigation overnight, with plans to resume after daybreak.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is set to begin processing and documenting the scene, emphasizing that the cause of the accident will not be speculated upon during the on-scene phase.

Statements and Condolences:

Both 6ABC and NBC10 Philadelphia expressed profound grief over the loss of Smith and Dougherty.

6ABC conveyed condolences to the families, loved ones, and everyone at US Helicopters, the company that leased the helicopter.

NBC10 Philadelphia echoed the sentiment, expressing solidarity with the families of the victims.

Reporters and colleagues conveyed their heartbreak, emphasizing disbelief at the tragic turn of events.

Background on the Helicopter and Leasing Company:

Chopper 6, a 2013 American Eurocopter AS-350, was leased by 6ABC from U.S. Helicopters Inc in North Carolina.

The leasing company expressed deep sympathy for the families and pledged cooperation with authorities during the investigation.

The helicopter played a crucial role for the news team in accessing challenging areas, contributing to weather coverage and providing aerial shots following incidents.

Remembrance of Previous Incidents:

The tragic event brings back memories of a similar incident just over a year ago when two employees at WBTV in Charlotte, North Carolina, lost their lives in a helicopter crash.

Meteorologist Jason Myers and pilot Chip Tayag were found dead after their helicopter crashed along Interstate 77.

The tragic helicopter crash involving 6ABC’s news team members casts a somber shadow over journalism.

The identification of the victims, Monroe Smith and Christopher Dougherty, underscores the personal loss suffered by their colleagues and the media community.

The challenging circumstances surrounding the crash site and the suspension of the investigation highlight the complexities involved.

As the NTSB begins its meticulous documentation, the condolences and statements from 6ABC, NBC10 Philadelphia, and U.S. Helicopters Inc reflect the collective grief and shock.

This unfortunate incident also prompts reflection on the risks journalists face while reporting from the skies, echoing a similar tragedy from the past.

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