1 Dead After Helicopter Crash Lands On Roof Of $2B Manhattan Office Tower
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The office workers at 787 Seventh Ave. were evacuated Monday afternoon after a helicopter made an emergency landing and burst into flames on the roof of the skyscraper.
The New York City Police Department tweeted the incident at the CalPERS-owned building, known as the AXA Equitable Center, was result of a “hard landing" and that the fire had been extinguished.
The only person on the helicopter died, according to The New York Times. Gov. Andew Cuomo confirmed soon after the incident that there was no indication of terrorism, and that the crash had been an emergency landing.
“If you’re a New Yorker, you have a level of PTSD, right, from 9/11,’’ Cuomo said, per the Times. “I remember that morning all too well.”
787 7th ave, #midtown NYC. We’re 1 block south. 20 mins ago there was a loud sound like a too-low #helicopter & I looked up and saw sheet of flame on roof and then smoke. News reports saying helicopter/small plane crash onto roof which would be consistent with what I heard/saw. pic.twitter.com/swY3ksLskH— Lance Koonce (@LHKoonce) June 10, 2019
There were no other reports of injuries at the time of publication, and hundreds of Fire Department workers were deployed to the building, which is between 51st and 52nd streets. It is unclear how much damage was done or when the building was reopened. A worker in the building told Bisnow that the building's staff told everyone to leave for the day.
CalPERS bought the 54-story office tower from French life insurance firm AXA Financial in January 2016 for $1.9B. Deutsche Bank provided a $780M first mortgage loan a month later. The building is 750 feet tall and was built in 1985.
Zach Escalante, a computer programmer who works in the building, told the New York Post that he felt the impact of the crash.
“We felt the building move,” he told the publication. “It felt like something hit or impacted the building."