SEARCH

Entries in helicopter (14)

Tuesday
Sep112012

Three Afghans Killed, NATO Helicopter Destroyed in Insurgent Attack

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- A NATO helicopter was destroyed and three Afghan intelligence agents were killed after a rocket attack at Bagram Air Base, according to NATO officials.

The attack happened Monday at 10 p.m.  The rockets landed directly on the airfield -- one of the biggest in the country -- leading a Chinook CH-47 to catch fire.

“It was parked on the airfield,” Charles Stadtlander, a NATO spokesperson, said. “The helicopter caught fire after it was hit by indirect fire.”

There were both coalition and Afghan service members aboard the helicopter when it caught fire.  Three Afghans aboard were killed, while an undisclosed number of coalition troops were hurt.  NATO’s International Security and Assistance Force typically does not provide details on troop casualties when they are non-fatal.  

Afghan officials say the three Afghans killed were all members of the National Directorate of Security, the country’s intelligence service.  Two other Afghans were hurt.

In a statement, the Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

Rocket attacks at Bagram, a major, sprawling coalition base an hour’s drive north of Kabul, aren’t rare.  Last month, an insurgent rocket attack damaged the plane being used by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, during his visit.  The plane was parked on the tarmac at the time and no one was killed.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Sep052012

NATO Helicopter Crashes in Afghanistan; Two Troops Dead

Tim Hawley/Getty Images(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- Two troops were killed Wednesday when a NATO helicopter crashed in eastern Afghanistan, the third time in 10 days that a coalition chopper has come down.

The International Security and Assistance Force (ISAF) would not confirm the nationality of the two soldiers.

The incident happened in Logar province, an area patrolled mostly by U.S. forces.  A spokesperson for the ISAF would not comment if the helicopter belonged to the U.S.

The cause of the crash is under investigation.

"Sometimes these things take weeks to determine the actual cause," Maj. Adam Wojack, an ISAF spokesperson, said.

The Taliban quickly claimed responsibility, saying one of their fighters shot the aircraft down. Afghan sources in Logar say a heavy firefight broke out after the helicopter crashed.

Less than a week ago, a NATO helicopter crashed near Kandahar, killing two Australian troops. 

On Aug. 26, another NATO helicopter crashed, described by ISAF as a "hard landing."  According to ISAF, no one on board was killed.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for both incidents, saying their fighters shot the aircraft down.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Aug282012

Taliban Claim They Downed US Helicopter in Afghanistan

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- An American forces helicopter crashed in eastern Afghanistan Tuesday. It's the second time this month a U.S. chopper has gone down.

NATO officials say no one on board was killed in what they're calling a "forced landing."

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the crash, saying it was a Chinook helicopter that was shot down by one of its fighters in Logar province.

Tuesday's incident is the second time this month a coalition helicopter has crashed.  Just two weeks ago, 11 troops -- including four Navy SEALs -- were killed when their Black Hawk helicopter was shot down just outside of Kandahar.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Aug272012

Syrian Helicopter Appears to Be Shot Down by Rebels

Tim Hawley/Getty Images (file photo)(JERUSALEM) -- Syrian opposition fighters battling the forces of President Bashar al-Assad managed to shoot down a military helicopter Monday morning in a neighborhood north of Damascus.

In a short video clip posted by activists online, a helicopter is seen flying over the al-Qaboon neighborhood on fire, with a trail of smoke behind it.  Rounds from what sounds like an anti-aircraft gun are fired and cheers of “God is great” erupt as the helicopter plummets towards the ground.

The video could not be independently verified. Syrian state television confirmed in a bulletin that the helicopter had come down, but did not say it had been shot down.

This follows a crash by a fighter jet in eastern Syria two weeks ago.  Rebels claimed to have downed a low-flying Mig-23 with a heavy machine gun and then released a video with a man they said was the captured pilot.  The Syrian state news agency blamed a technical failure that “caused the command devices to break down, and the pilot to leave the plane by the ejection seat.”

There was no sign in either incident of Stinger missiles the opposition Free Syrian Army is reported to have acquired.

Opposition forces have long begged the international community to impose a no-fly zone over Syria.  Helicopter gunships and, more recently, jets have been widely used against the rebels in this 18-month conflict.

The helicopter crash comes a day after mass burials were held for victims of what activists are calling a massacre in the town of Daraya, southwest of Damascus.  More than 200 bodies were said to have been found on Saturday, most of them killed execution-style with a bullet in the head.  

Daraya had been under siege for much of last week, continually shelled by regime forces.  Residents said troops then went door-to-door killing people in their homes, including entire families.  State media said Daraya had been “cleansed of terrorist remnants.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jul192012

US Navy Helicopter Crashes in Oman, Two Crew Members Missing

File photo. (U.S. Navy)(WASHINGTON) -- A U.S. Navy helicopter carrying five crew members crashed 58 miles southwest of Muscat, Oman, Thursday “while conducting heavy lift support operations,” the Bahrain-based U.S. Fifth Fleet said. The incident “was not due to any sort of hostile activity,” the fleet continued.

A U.S. government official told ABC News that three of the crew members were safely recovered, but that search and rescue efforts were still underway for the remaining two.

The U.S. military also disclosed that another helicopter was at the scene of the crash “providing search and rescue assistance.”

The downed chopper was one of four counter-mine helicopters sent to the Gulf back in March.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar222012

Military Investigates Showboating in Helicopter Crash

Tim Hawley/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. military is investigating whether an attack helicopter pilot was “showing off” when he made a low pass over a remote Afghan outpost and then slammed violently into the ground, according to a defense official.

The dramatic crash was captured on amateur eyewitness video, which recently surfaced online.

The video shows an Apache helicopter coming into view before swooping down low over a snowy coalition outpost. The person shooting the video, who has not been identified, shouts in apparent fear as the helicopter narrowly misses a building and then seems to chuckle in relief after it pulls back up. But after coming back around, the pilot apparently loses control after the steep ascent, drops down low again and slams its belly onto the snowy ground just feet from the camera.

The helicopter skids towards another group of people, but comes off the ground briefly before crashing again in the distance.

A spokesperson for the U.S.-led International Security Assistance Force told ABC News the video was taken Feb. 6 in the Paktika province in Afghanistan. No one on the ground was injured and the aircrew survived with minor injuries, the spokesperson said.

One former Blackhawk helicopter pilot told ABC News the Apache pilot appeared to be performing a “return to target” maneuver — the low swoop followed up by the 180 degree turn followed by another swoop — a standard combat maneuver for which Apache pilots are generally extensively trained.

There was no enemy activity in the area and multiple military experts said it’s possible the pilot was performing the dangerous maneuver for the benefit of the spectators on the ground.

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar222012

Russian Prisoner Escapes by Helicopter

File photo. (Stocktrek/Getty Images)(MOSCOW) -- It sounds like something out of a movie. A prison escape so daring it almost seemed improbable. According to a Russian news report, a convicted murderer climbed a rope ladder into a helicopter and escaped as guards fired shots at the chopper.

The incident took place at a high security penitentiary that houses about 1,700 prisoners in the Volgoda Region of Russia, just east of St. Petersburg. There, according to RIA Novasti, a prisoner named Alexei Shestakov was halfway through a 24-year sentence for murder.

Thursday morning the helicopter approached the prison and dropped a rope ladder. Shestakov reportedly scampered up and the aircraft darted away, dodging shots from prison guards who tried in vain to prevent the escape.

RIA Novasti reports that the helicopter crew was forced to fly towards the prison by the escapee’s accomplices.

“At the scheduled time today the helicopter’s crew landed it at the designated place, taking on board a man and a woman. After the aircraft took off, they drew guns and forced the pilot to hover above the penal colony and throw out a rope. The convict used the rope to climb onboard,” an Interior Ministry spokesman said.

Police eventually caught the escaped convict, who was “slightly injured” after refusing to surrender when cornered by law enforcement. The people who helped him escape are reportedly still at large.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar222012

Dramatic Military Helicopter Crash Caught on Camera

Tim Hawley/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Dramatic new video gives a rare, up-close view of an American military attack chopper apparently losing control and crashing hard at a remote, mountainous outpost in Afghanistan.

The video, which appeared online recently, shows an Apache helicopter coming into view before swooping down low over the coalition outpost.  The person shooting the video, who has not been identified, shouts in apparent fear as the helicopter narrowly misses a building and then chuckles in relief after it pulls back up.  But after coming back around, the chopper drops down low again and slams its belly onto the snowy ground just feet from the camera.

The helicopter skids towards another group of people, but comes off the ground briefly before crashing again in the distance.

A spokesperson for the U.S.-led International Security Assistance Force told ABC News the video was taken on Feb. 6 in the Paktika province in Afghanistan.  Remarkably, no one on the ground was injured and the aircrew survived, the spokesperson said.

There was no enemy activity in the area and the U.S. Army is currently investigating the incident, he said.

While the cause of the crash is unknown, former Marine Corps pilot and current ABC News consultant Steve Ganyard said it appears the pilot was performing dangerous low-level maneuvers for spectators and then lost control.

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Sep222011

ISAF Kills Afghan Taliban Leader Linked to Downed US Helicopter

Romeo Gacad/AFP/Getty Images(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- When a U.S. Chinook helicopter was shot down by Taliban insurgents in Wardak, Afghanistan, last month, killing 38 people on board, the target of operations that night escaped.

But on Tuesday, coalition forces finally tracked Qari Tahir down in a dry riverbed in Sayyidabad district and killed him with an air strike, NATO's International Security Assistance Force announced Thursday.

"Tahir was the Taliban’s top leader in Tangi Valley and was the target of a previous combined operation on Aug. 5, 2011, that resulted in the loss of the CH-47 Chinook last month.  He led a group of insurgent fighters throughout the valley and was known to use roadside bombs and rockets to intimidate the local populace," the ISAF said in a statement.

"After ensuring no civilians were in the area, the force called for the air strike which resulted in the death of Tahir and another insurgent," the statement continued.

The district where Tahir died has become one of the Taliban's closest safehavens to Kabul.  A few months ago, the Taliban overran a military base that had been transferred from the U.S. to Afghan security forces, and residents say insurgents regularly set up checkpoints throughout the area.

The ISAF doesn't admit the district is largely Taliban-controlled, but it does admit it has launched an average of one night raid in the district every week in 2011, killing 35 suspected insurgents and detaining more than 80.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
Aug152011

Defying US, Pakistan Let China Study Secret Chopper Downed in Bin Laden Op

AAMIR QURESHI/AFP/Getty Images(ISLAMABAD) -- In what may be the latest evidence of the breakdown in its relationship with the U.S., Pakistan reportedly gave China access to a secret stealth American helicopter that went down during the raid that killed Osama bin Laden in May.

The Financial Times reports that Pakistani intelligence gave the Chinese military access to the modified U.S. Black Hawk helicopter that crashed into the wall of bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad during the mission. Navy SEALs destroyed part of it after it went down but the tail section was left intact.

According to the newspaper, the Chinese -- who supply weapons and equipment to Pakistan's military -- were allowed to survey and photograph the wreckage, even though the U.S. had asked Pakistan to secure it.

Eventually, a visit from Sen. John Kerry convinced Pakistan to return what was left of the damaged craft -- but that was after the Chinese studied it.

Pictures of the secret helicopter have appeared online and it's not immediately clear how useful to the Chinese their own survey would be; that being said, the Chinese military has become adept at reverse-engineering military hardware from other countries, including the U.S.

One critical element of the chopper is its radar-absorbing "skin;" the Pakistanis reportedly allowed the Chinese to snatch samples of the top-secret coating.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio