A sightseeing tour has turned into a tragedy in Arizona when a tourist-carrying helicopter crashed and left people dead and injured.
The Grand Canyon a popular tourist attraction in the United States and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The helicopter tour is a sought-after activity among the tourists visiting the steep canyon standing by the Colorado River.
The Papillon Grand Canyon Helicopters chopper crashed at around 5:20 in the evening on Saturday with six passengers and the pilot on board. The accident killed three people and left others injured. Francis Bradley, Hualapai Nation Police Chief, said that the injured people were treated at the scene.
The helicopter crashed near Quartermaster Canyon, which is a part of the Hualapai Indian Nation and an in-demand visiting spot. Papillon Helicopters operates flying tours in various areas including Grand Canyon. According to its website, it flies nearly 600,000 passengers on various tours per year. They claim to meet or exceed the safety rules and regulations imposed by the Federal Aviation Administration.
Papillon’s name is involved in another crash in 2001. Since then, they have made significant improvements in maintenance of their choppers and everything else. They have also become strict about the qualifications of their pilots.
Flying in the Grand Canyon is a treacherous job not only because of the steep rocky walls on both sides but also for the number of helicopters there at any given time.