CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Two people were killed in a helicopter crash along Interstate 77 in south Charlotte Tuesday afternoon, officials confirmed. WCNC Charlottehas learned the chopper belongs to the local television station WBTV.
The crash happened around noon between Tyvola Roadand Nations Ford Road along the southbound side of I-77. Medic confirmed both victims were pronounced dead at the scene. WBTV confirmed the victims were chopper pilot Chip Tayag and meteorologist Jason Myers.
WCNC Charlotte confirmed the helicopter is a 1999 Robinson R44.
All lanes on I-77 near the crash are blocked while crews respond to the incident. CMPD has closed multiple ramps onto I-77 near the crash. Drivers should avoid the area at this time. Authorities said they expect I-77 in that area will be closed until midnight.
WHAT WE KNOW
- The helicopter belongs to Charlotte TV station WBTV
- 2 people were pronounced dead at the scene — Chopper pilot Chip Tayag and meteorologist Jason Myers
- The helicopter was a 1999 Robinson R44
- CMPD is blocking access to I-77 near the scene, the road could remain closed overnight
A witness told WCNC Charlotte it appeared the pilot knew the helicopter was in trouble and made an aggressive move to prevent crashing directly onto I-77.
“I think that he absolutely knew that he was gonna have to put that down,” the man said. “He did his best to put it down … Whoever the pilot was, did their best to put that thing down where it wasn’t going to injure a lot of people, and in that respect, they did a fabulous job.”
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper issued the following statement Tuesday:
“This is a terrible tragedy for the WBTV family and we are praying for them and all of those in the media who work so hard to keep the public informed.”
WCNC Charlotte President and General Manager Joan Barrett released the following statement when the station learned the helicopter belonged to WBTV:
We want to extend our deepest condolences to the staff and family members of the WBTV team. Losing team members in this way is heart-wrenching. We are here to assist the WBTV team in any way we can.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) will investigate the cause of the crash.
While specifics have not yet been released, the NTSB has a standard process it typically follows in the aftermath of an aviation crash.
CHARLOTTE, NC (WCNC) — Multiple crews are on the scene of a helicopter crash on Interstate 77 in south Charlotte. Medic confirmed two people were killed in the crash.
Crews were first called to a reported aircraft crash at I-77 and Tyvola Road in south Charlotte around noon Tuesday.
Heavy traffic is stacked up on the southbound lanes of I-77 between Tyvola Road and Nations Ford Road. The crash appears to be on the right shoulder of the highway.
Multiple lanes of I-77 are blocked while crews respond to the crash. At least two lanes of southbound I-77 are shut down between Tyvola Road and Nations Ford Road.
WCNC Charlotte has reached out to Medic and Charlotte-Mecklenburg police for more information. A crew is headed toward the scene to gather more information.