Who Is the Pilot Involved In Helicopter Crash in New York City? One Person Confirmed Dead Following 'Hard Landing'

Who Is the Pilot Involved In Helicopter Crash in New York City?
Policemen stand near emergency services vehicles after a helicopter crash-landed on top of a building in midtown Manhattan in New York on June 10, 2019. Speaking at the scene New York Governor Andrew Cuomo told reporters there had been "casualties" on board the helicopter, but that no one in the building had been hurt. JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images

One person is dead after a helicopter made a hard-landing on top of a New York City building on Monday. The pilot was the only person in the aircraft, according to authorities, who confirmed the pilot's death.

American Continental Properties, the company using the Agusta A109E helicopter at the time of the crash confirmed that the pilot is Tim McCormack, of Clinton Corners, New York, the Associated Press reported.

McCormack had flown for the company for five years and had obtained certification as a flight instructor in 2018. McCormack was certified to fly helicopters and single-engine airplanes in 2004, the AP said. He was a former volunteer fire chief for the East Clinton Fire Department, the AP said.

In a statement, Kathleen Bergen, a spokesperson for the Federal Aviation Administration the department's "air traffic controllers did not handle the flight," but noted the National Transportation Safety Board planned to investigate the incident and determine the cause of the crash.

The department confirmed the model of the helicopter was manufactured by Italian aerospace company, Leonardo, and are used for transportation, medical, security and utility. The aircraft additionally featured IFR (instrument flight rules) certifications that allow operators to fly in lower visibility, however, pilots still be trained in the equipment.

The helicopter made an abrupt landing on the roof of a 51-floor office building located at 787 Seventh Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, instantly starting a fire. The 750-foot tall AXA Equitable Center, where the accident occurred, was built in 1985. The building's roof does not feature a helipad.

The New York City Fire Department told New York Times more than 100 emergency crews were sent to the scene of the accident shortly after it occurred around 2 p.m. ET. The fire has since been contained.

People working in the office building were safely evacuated as well as others in surrounding buildings. Only the roof of the building was damaged by the crash.

It's unclear why the helicopter landed on the building's roof, however, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said the incident, which he referred to as a "forced" and "emergency" landing, didn't appear to be an act of terrorism.

"The preliminary information is that there was a helicopter that made a forced landing, an emergency landing or landed on the roof of the building for one reason or another. There was a fire that happened when the helicopter hit the roof. People who were in the building said they felt the building shake. The fire department believes the fire is under control. There may have been casualties involved in people in the helicopter," Cuomo, who was at the crash site, said in a statement to reporters. "We don't know what caused the helicopter to land on top of the building but the people in the building itself, nobody has been hurt."

However, CBS New York affiliate CBS2 reported the pilot did make a call on his radio claiming he was in trouble. In a press conference, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio couldn't confirm if air traffic controllers communicated with the pilot but said authorities were investigating."That's part of the investigation – to see if there was any contact made with air traffic control," NYPD Commissioner James O'Neil said.

The weather in New York was particularly rainy and foggy on Monday. The Weather Channel reported low clouds limited visibility in the area where the crash took place.

Cuomo noted how the accident could be worrisome to New Yorkers in the aftermath of 9/11.

"If you're a New Yorker you have a level of PTSD from 9/11 and I remember that morning all too well. So as soon as you hear an aircraft hit a building, I think my mind goes where every New Yorker's mind goes," Cuomo said.