The helicopter crashed into a 54-story office building on New York’s 7th avenue, north of the Theater District and Times Square, just before 2pm.
Emergency responders continue to work at the scene “in response to fuel leaking from the helicopter,” FDNY tweeted.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo showed up on the scene shortly after the accident. Asked by a reporter how he felt to hear an aircraft had crashed into a Manhattan building, he said every New Yorker had “a level of PTSD from 9/11,” but added that there was no indication that there was anything more to the incident and that the aircraft had just attempted an emergency or “hard” landing on the roof.
Cuomo also said the emergency responders had brought the fire on the roof under control. Around 100 fire and emergency service units have been dispatched to the area.
Footage emerged on Twitter of the building being evacuated after the crash. “We felt a jolt in our building and shortly after got the instruction to evacuate,” one worker in the building tweeted.
The area is “swarming with police officers, emergency vehicles, fire trucks, and everybody is looking up,” NBC journalist Rehema Ellis reported, suggesting that poor visibility and rainy conditions could have contributed to the accident. There has been strong wind and rain in the city all day.
Helicopters are often used for transportation and sight-seeing over Manhattan.
White House spokesperson Hogan Gidley said President Donald Trump has been briefed on the crash and “continues to monitor the situation.”