London copter crash leaves 2 dead

Two people died this morning when a helicopter crashed in central London after colliding with a crane on top of a newly-built tower block at Vauxhall Cross on the south bank of the river Thames, local media reported.

Nine other people were also injured, one critically, when the copter blasted into flames after hitting the crane and crashing into a street during morning rush hour, British media reported.

The Metropolitan police commissioner, Bernard Hogan-Howe, said “there were 11 casualties, with two dead, one person critically ill, and others “less seriously injured”.

A Met police spokesman confirmed that the helicopter had come down shortly after 8am on Wednesday.

“Two people have been confirmed dead at the scene. Two have been taken to south London hospital. We await a condition update”, the spokesman added.

London fire brigade said the crash took place near Wandsworth Road in south Lambeth.

About 90 firefighters managed to kill the fire after 25 minutes near Wandsworth Road. Doctors said one of the dead was in the helicopter and the other on the ground.

NATS, which runs air traffic control across the UK, said the helicopter pilot had been receiving assistance earlier in the journey but not at the time of the crash.

The incident will be subject to an investigation by the Air Accident Investigation Branch.

MOL/HE