Ten people were killed in a helicopter crash in Argentina during the filming of a popular European survival reality show called Dropped.
The show takes celebrities to rough terrain areas, drops them off, and films their attempts at survival. But the tragic shooting of this particular episode never got that far, when three famous French sportscasters and Olympians died alongside eight others when two helicopters collided in the La Rioja province of Argentina, near Villa Castelli. According to the BBC News, the sports personalities who lost their lives in the helicopter crash were Florence Arthaud, a long-distance yachtswoman, Camille Muffat, an Olympic swimmer, and Alexis Vastine, an Olympic boxer.
The deaths of the celebrities were confirmed by the office of French President Francois Hollande. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Argentinian pilots of each vessel were also killed in the helicopter crash. Their names were Juan Carlos Castillo and Roberto Abate. The identities of the other three passengers have not been revealed, but they were also French citizens and part of the crew filming the reality show Dropped.
“An explosion occurred and it’s believed that they must have collided,” said Cesar Angula, La Rioja Secretary of Security. “Aeronautical experts will have to determine that.”
The Olympians involved in the helicopter crash had successful careers as athletes before their untimely deaths. Alexis Vastine won a bronze in boxing at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 and Camille Muffat won three separate medals at swimming events at the 2012 London Olympics.
“The causes of the crash are not known,” said the mayor of Villa Castelli, Andres Navarrete. “The helicopters hit the ground and we have this tragedy.”
Local weather officials even reported that the conditions in the mountains where the helicopter crash took place were good, otherwise suitable for a day of flying or filming.
So far, no information has been released about whether Dropped will continue filming this season after the helicopter crash or if it will continue shooting at all. However, the channel that broadcasts Dropped did release a statement about the helicopter crash.
“We learn with great sadness about the accident during the filming of the Dropped show. All TF1 teams come together in this terrible time with the pain of the families and relatives of the victims.”
Sylvain Wiltord, a former French football player and another contestant from Dropped who was not aboard during the helicopter crash, tweeted a response about the tragedy in French. It translates to “I’m sad for my friends, I’m trembling, I’m horrified, I have no words, I don’t want to say anything.”