Pilot in NYC copter crash cites passenger restraint harness

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NEW YORK (AP) – The pilot of a helicopter that crashed into New York City’s East River told federal investigators that he believed the aircraft’s fuel was cut off when a passenger’s restraint tether tangled with an emergency fuel cutoff shift.

The pilot told the National Transportation Safety Board that he went to flip off the switch because the craft was going down, but discovered that it was already off and that part of the harness was underneath it.

The NTSB detailed the pilot’s account in a preliminary report released Monday on the March 11 crash that killed five. The NTSB has not issued any findings on the cause of the crash, and the report did not offer an opinion as to whether the pilot’s observations were correct.

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