Navy helicopter crash lands; one injured

An MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter prepares to land on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz in the Pacific Ocean
Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Ian Kinkead/U.S. Navy via Associated Press file

One individual was injured when a Navy Seahawk helicopter made a crash landing in coastal Virginia on Wednesday, the service and state police confirmed. 

“We can confirm that a Navy MH-60S helicopter experienced a hard landing in a field in the vicinity of Smithfield, Va.,” Naval Air Force Atlantic spokesman Lt. Cmdr. Robert Myers said in a statement. 

“Initial information indicates that first responders are on scene and that three personnel are being assessed for non-life-threatening injuries,” Myers added. 

Virginia State Police, meanwhile, said a member of the helicopter crew was transported to the hospital for minor injuries but the two pilots were largely unharmed in the landing, which took place shortly before 11:30 a.m.  

Police added that the aircraft hit several trees on the way down. 

A hard landing is defined as one that takes place when the pilot is in partial control of the aircraft as it lands with more speed and force than usual.  

The aircraft was assigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 26, based out of Naval Station Norfolk, roughly 30 miles southeast of Smithfield.

Myers said the accident is under investigation. 

—Updated at 5:09 p.m.

Tags helicopter crash Virginia

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