Witnesses describe scene of deadly helicopter crash near Newberg - KPTV - FOX 12

Witnesses describe scene of deadly helicopter crash near Newberg

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NEWBERG, OR (KPTV) -

Investigators are still trying to figure out what caused a deadly helicopter crash in Newberg Wednesday night, less than a mile from Chehalem Airfield.

The wreckage was towed away late Thursday after from a hay field just off Bayley Road. The helicopter went down near the middle of the field killing both people on board.

FAA investigators are still examining the wreckage and scene, and haven’t said what went wrong. The identities of the two victims is also unknown at this time.

Wednesday night, David Gadsen photographed all of the commotion from across the street. One deputy’s car, then another, followed by firefighters.

“You could see the activity around the fire. Initially, we thought it was perhaps machinery,” Gadsen described.

What he and fellow witness Tamara Haveman thought was just a brush fire caused by farm equipment was something much worse.

“Devastated. Just absolutely devastated,” Haveman said of her feelings seeing the blaze. “Human life, there’s no replacing human life. “

The wreckage caught fire, and then burned the field around it. All less than half a mile from the Chehalem Airfield.

Haveman said they all noticed the air traffic, but never thought it could bring this type of tragedy.

“We have an awful lot of air traffic over our place,” she said. “It runs through your mind because there are air accidents, but no, you don’t. It was the last thing I expected.”

Precision Aviation Training owns the helicopter, and a student pilot and instructor were inside. The business posted on Facebook that the flight was part of routine night training.

The owners declined to comment on camera but asked for understanding on their post.

“We ask for your cooperation and understanding as we work through the processes and seek to understand more about what happened and what may have caused it.”

The owners also wrote that they haven’t had anything like this happen in more than thirty years of business.

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