Tim McCormack died having crash-landed on the top of a skyscraper in Midtown Manhattan. Volunteer fire-fighting Chief had radioed that he was in trouble moments before the crash
The pilot who was killed when his privately-owned helicopter crashed into a skyscraper in Manhattan, on Monday afternoon, has been named as 58-year-old Tim McCormack, from the Hudson Valley, in upstate New York.
McCormack was the only victim of the accident, which saw the helicopter completely destroyed and in flames atop a Midtown high-rise building. His death was confirmed by the East Clinton Volunteer Fire Department (ECVFD), in a statement on Facebook. The pilot has served as Chief of the department for ten years, having joined the service in 1994.
The New York Police Department reported, on Twitter, that the helicopter has suffered a “hard landing”, meaning that McCormack has tactically landed on the roof of 787 7th Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, minimizing the potential for loss of life. The building was evacuated following the crash.
According to NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill, McCormack had been waiting out bad weather before he took off from the 34th Street heliport, on Manhattan’s east side. He took off just 11 minutes before he crashed.
O’Neill said he may have been heading back to the helicopter’s home base, in Linden, New Jersey, having dropped off his boss in the city.
McCormack, who had qualified as a Rotorcraft flight instructor last year, had been certified, in 2004, to fly helicopters and single-engine airplanes, according to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records.
He had been hired to fly an Agusta A109E helicopter for a private owner, Daniele Bodini, who commuted between the city and upstate New York. The helicopter was privately-owned by American Continental Properties, which confirmed that the deceased had flown for them for the past five years.
Confirming his death, the East Clinton Volunteer Fire Department, said of the volunteer fire chief “Tim was a dedicated, highly professional and extremely well-trained firefighter. Tim’s technical knowledge and ability to command an emergency were exceptional
It added, “Chief McCormack was extremely respected by not only the members of the department but throughout the Dutchess County fire service.”
“Tim will be exceptionally missed by this department’s members, not only for his leadership but for his wonderful sense of humor. Rest in Peace Brother,” the statement concluded.
Tim McCormack (1961-2019) Clinton Volunteer Fire Department 1994-2019. Served as Chief of the department for 10 years. ...Publiée par The Offical East Clinton Volunteer Fire Department sur Lundi 10 juin 2019
Following the 2pm helicopter crash on Monday, New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo told a press conference there was no reason to suspect any form of terrorism or that a crime had taken place. He said “The only indication was a helicopter had to do an emergency or a hard landing or crashed onto the rooftop of a building.
“There’s no indication of anything more than that.”
He added “If you’re a New Yorker, you have a level of PTSD from 9/11 and I remember that morning all too well. So as soon as you hear an aircraft hit a building, I think my mind goes where every New Yorker’s goes.”
The United States National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is investigating whether the pilot received approval from La Guardia tower to go into the restricted airspace where the crash occurred amid heavy rain and fog.