Preliminary report on Tucson chopper crash

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New information Wednesday about last week's helicopter crash that killed a pilot and two medical personnel in Tucson.

The National Transportation Safety Board has released a preliminary report about the crash.

The 911 calls were terrifying, the scene horrific, but the preliminary report outlining the helicopter crash that killed a three member crew on Wednesday, July 28, was short.

According to the report, issued by the National Transportation Safety Board, the helicopter flown that day was manufactured by American Eurocopter, an American aircraft manufacturing company that considers itself a leading provider of helicopters in the united states.

The report confirms the air ambulance flight originated at Marana Regional Airport at 1:21 P.M. Headed for Douglas. About 10 minutes after take off witnesses saw the helicopter flying steadily in a southeasterly direction when it started to descend rapidly and enter a left hand turn.

Witnesses also told investigators the helicopter was making unusual sounds; rapid intermittent popping sounds followed by unusual quiet. Then the body of the aircraft became vertical, it descended, hit the ground and burst into flames.

According to the report, the last time the helicopter showed up on radar it was was hovering 600 feet above ground-- about a quarter mile from the crash site.

Although neighbors who witnessed the crash were frantic, the report says the pilot didn't transmit a radio distress call.

A public memorial will be held for the victims of the crash 10 A.M. Friday at Calvary Chapel East, near Speedway and Camino Seco.