Seattle Chopper Spun 360 Degrees Before Deadly Crash

New reports have stated that video footage shows the Seattle chopper that crashed earlier this week had rotated a full 360 degrees before plunging to the ground, killing two.

In an earlier report by The Inquisitr, a KOMO Seattle news chopper came crashing down near the Seattle Space Needle. The Seattle chopper was carrying one passenger, Bill Strothman, when it fell from the sky. Both Strothman and the chopper’s pilot, Gary Pfitzner, died on impact.

The chopper reportedly crashed into at least three vehicles, causing a large explosion that critically injured one man. The man had been in his vehicle at the time of the crash, which exploded into a ball of flames from fluid that had leaked from the downed chopper. The man had reportedly sustained burns over 50 percent of his body.

The man has since been identified as Richard Newman, 38. Newman underwent surgery Friday before being placed back in intensive care and listed in serious condition. A Harborview Medical Center spokeswoman stated that Newman actually sustained burns covering closer to 20 percent of his body instead of the initial 50 percent.

According to ABC News, surveillance footage taken from three security camera recordings near the chopper crash site showed the aircraft rotating counterclockwise during takeoff Tuesday morning.

The National Transportation Safety Board has been looking into the Seattle Chopper crash and told reporters that the chopper was seen rotating counterclockwise and “rose slightly, nearly level, from a rooftop helipad.”

The chopper continued to rotate for about 360 degrees before it pitched forward and “continued the counterclockwise rotation in a nose low attitude until it disappeared from the camera’s field of view,” the agency said in its one-page statement.”

The Seattle Times reported that these findings are consistent with witness reports. Dennis Hogenson, acting deputy chief of the agency’s Western Pacific Region said that the new video is significant because it helps clarify the differences in witness statements.

“We got a lot of witness accounts,” Hogenson said. “But now (with the video), we have hard evidence of what happened.”

Other witness reports stated that they heard a “funny” sound coming from the chopper before it fell and was destroyed in the fatal fire. The agency has since moved the wreckage of the Seattle chopper and continues to comb through the remains to try and find more information that could help lead them to some answers. According to ABC News, investigators are focusing on the helicopter’s engine, the airframe, the pilot and the environment. A final crash report reportedly could take up to a year to finalize.

[Image via KATU News Twitter Feed]