Local meteorologist and pilot killed in North Carolina helicopter crash

A helicopter crashed Tuesday along an interstate highway in Charlotte, North Carolina, killing two people. CBS Charlotte affiliate WBTV identified the two people killed as Jason Myers, a meteorologist at the station, and Chip Sacrifice, the pilot of the helicopter.

WBTV said in a statement, “Our news helicopter Sky3 crashed Tuesday afternoon with two of our crew members on board.” “Meteorologist Jason Myers and pilot Chip Tayag lost their lives. We are working to comfort their families during this difficult time. We appreciate the support of our employees and your continued prayers for their families. “

According to WBTV, Myers is survived by a wife and four children.

WBTV reported that Tyagi had been operating Sky3 Helicopters since 2017 and had more than 20 years of experience as a pilot. According to WBTV, he also flew for the Total Traffic and Weather Network.

The Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement that the Robinson R44 helicopter with two people on board crashed at about 12:20 p.m. local time.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Johnny Jennings said at a news conference that no other vehicles were involved, as the helicopter landed just off I-77.

Jennings said, “It looks like the pilot who was piloting the aircraft made some diversionary moves to avoid traffic … To me it looks like a heroic incident where the pilot did not risk injuring someone else.” And tried to avoid putting anyone else in danger.” “If that is indeed the case then that pilot is a hero, in my view, for making sure that the safety of those driving on the road is not put at risk.”

According to The Associated Press, WBTV anchors Jamie Boll and Molly Grantham were reporting on the crash live for at least 90 minutes before they interrupted the broadcast to announce that it was their two colleagues who were killed. Were.

Grantham said, “This is a heavy day at WBTV as our family mourns alongside the families of Chip and Jason.” “They were colleagues, and they are friends. And we waited to report this information publicly … to make sure that their wives and their families were informed first.”

An apparently emotional Bol said “the words are hard to come by,” adding that the station had been “holding onto this for a while.”

As photos of the dead were displayed on the screen, Boll said that he had seen Tyag on the helicopter pad earlier that morning as the pilot waited to pick up Myers.

Boll said, “Every single day in this newsroom, Chip will wave at you, say hello, ask you how you’re doing. He’ll wave from behind the helicopter’s pilot’s chair.” “Jason Myers, I could go on. He bonded with this newsroom with incredible energy and smile and care for everyone here… We are devastated.”

“We just can’t find the right words to tell you how much he means to us and how much we’re thinking of both of our families,” Boll said.

The aftermath of the accident was captured on highway traffic camera footage, with police cars seen crowding around the crash site. Police said the southbound lanes of I-77 near Nation Ford Road, which were otherwise empty, would be closed “for an extended period of time”. Twitter,

Both the FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the accident.

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