Authorities say one person has died after a helicopter crashed into the Tennessee River

One person was killed when a helicopter crashed into the Tennessee River on Monday night, authorities said.

Three others escaped the wreckage and were rescued by a pontoon boat that was on the river near Knoxville, The Knoxville News Sentinel reported. The survivors refused medical treatment, fire department spokesman D.J. Corcoran said at a news conference late Monday.

Nearby residents called authorities after the crash happened around 7:40 p.m., and the Knoxville Fire Department sent crews into the water to search for the missing victim using underwater sonar devices, according to Corcoran.

Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Kathleen Bergen said the victim’s body was recovered within a few feet of the crash site around 9:45 p.m.

The victim was not immediately identified and it was not clear whether the victim was a pilot or a passenger, Corcoran said. The other three people on board were also not identified.

It was not immediately known whether the aircraft, a Eurocopter EC-130, was landing or taking off when it went down, officials said.

The National Transportation Safety Board is determining the cause of the crash.


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