CHATHAM, NJ - A helicopter made a crash landing behind the Suburban Court apartment complex at 525 Main St. in Chatham on Friday evening, setting down between the parking garages.
The crash occurred at 6:20 p.m. and the pilot reportedly walked away from the accident while a passenger was taken to Morristown Medical Center by the Chatham Emergency Squad with lower back pain.
"At approximately 6:20 tonight, we had a helicopter experience an off-airport landing," Steve Williams, Chatham Borough public information officer, said. "That is what the FAA is referring to this as. The FAA will be here (Saturday) morning and will begin their investigation. The NTSB (National Transportation Safety Board) is going to corroborate with the FAA and they'll work on it together, but the FAA will be out here with a salvage company to take the helicopter away.
"There was a pilot and a passenger in their early 50s. The pilot is cooperating with authorities as we speak. He is from New Jersey. The helicopter was flying from Richmond, Va., to Lincoln Park, New Jersey."
According to Williams, the Robinson helicopter is an R44 Clipper. The helicoper weighs 1,400 pounds, is 30 feet long with a rotor span of 33 feet. It has a range of 348 miles and a cruising speed of 124 miles per hour
According to eyewitness Roger Pridham, he was walking on Main Street when he saw a white light come straight down.
"They were coming from Virginia and going to Lincoln Park," Chatham resident Diane Conlan said. "They had a total engine failure and he just dropped out of the sky."