The National Transportation Safety Board says in a preliminary report that the pilot in a fatal helicopter crash in Chugiak had been conducting practice flights with an external load.
The NTSB report published Friday says the crash Wednesday occurred as the Robinson R-44 operated by Global Positioning Services Inc. was flying at the Birchwood Airport with a 150-foot long line attached to a 55-gallon barrel filled with fluid. A witness saw the nose of the helicopter pitch up before it crashed.
The NTSB says the flight was in preparation for an upcoming project.
The 62-year-old pilot, Thomas Moore of Anchorage, died in the crash. A bystander sustained burn injuries while trying to rescue Moore.
The NTSB report says visibility was 10 miles and winds slightly more than 3 mph.
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