All four passengers on a medical helicopter carrying a 2-month-old baby girl to a hospital in Pennsylvania survived when that helicopter crashed next to a church on Tuesday afternoon, CBS Philly reported. Officials called the landing, which also did not injure anyone on the ground, a “miracle.”
A pilot, a crew member, a nurse and the infant were taken to local hospitals and are in stable condition with non-life threatening injuries, Upper Darby Fire Chief Derrick Sawyer said at a press conference Tuesday afternoon.
The medical chopper was heading to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia from Maryland when it crashed near the Drexel Hill United Methodist Church in Delaware County just before 1 p.m., CBS Philly reports. According to FlightAware, the helicopter took off from Hagerstown, Maryland, at 10:29 a.m. Tuesday and landed in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, less than 10 minutes later. Then at 12:06 p.m. the helicopter took off from Chambersburg before crashing 47 minutes after that. The helicopter appears to have maintained its speed while rapidly dropping in altitude.
All four victims were out of the aircraft by the time authorities arrived, Upper Darby Police Department Superintendent Timothy M. Bernhardt said.
Officials commended the pilot for dodging utility lines and managing to land the helicopter without hitting the church or any other nearby buildings or cars.
“The best way to describe it is a miracle,” Sawyer told CBS Philly.
Authorities said they do not yet know why the helicopter crashed. The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating.