Video shows survivor run from fatal Grand Canyon helicopter crash - as victims identified

Footage has emerged of a survivor running from the burning scene of fatal helicopter crash that claimed the lives of three tourists in the United States' Grand Canyon.

U.S. Grand Canyon helicopter crash kills three: report (clone 38911993)

U.S. Grand Canyon helicopter crash kills three: report (clone 38911993)

The helicopter crashed in the Grand Canyon on Saturday (local time) killing three people and injuring four others, Arizona media and a federal aviation spokesman said.

The three victims were British tourists on holiday celebrating one of their group's birthday.

Video footage shot by Lionel Douglass, 63, shows a woman staggering away from the flames, reportedly screaming "Jason". It is unclear who the survivor is.

Stuart Hill, 30, and girlfriend Becky Dobson, 27, were on holiday with four others. Source: Facebook / Becky Dobson

A survivor, lower right, walks away from the scene of a deadly tour helicopter crash along the jagged rocks of the Grand Canyon, in Arizona. Source: AP

The helicopter was on a tour of the canyon, one of the top US tourist destinations and more than 1.6 km deep, when it went down, a dispatcher for the Hualapai Department of Emergency Services told Phoenix television station KNXV.

The chopper crashed onto the jagged rocks of the Grand Canyon on the Hualapai reservation outside the boundaries of the national park.

Victims veterinary receptionist 27-year-old Becky Dobson, her boyfriend 30-year-old Stuart Hill and his brother 32-year-old Jason Hill did not survive the crash.

The group were celebrating Stuart Hill's birthday.

Stuart Hill, left, and his brother Jason Hill, both died in a Grand Canyon helicopter crash. Source: AP

Emergency personnel arrive at the scene of the deadly tour helicopter crash. Source: AP

Dobson’s father told Britain’s Press Association news agency that they had been looking forward to the trip for a long time.

Four other people, including the pilot and newlyweds Ellie Milward, 29, and Jonathan (Jon) Udall, 32, remain hospitalised.

Heartbroken friends paid tribute to Ms Dobson on Facebook, with one writing: "She was one of the nicest people I've ever been lucky enough to meet and call my friend."

"Rest in peace lovely, you have no idea how much you'll be missed. My thoughts and love are with your family and everyone else involved."

Becky Dobson died in the crash. Source: Facebook / Becky Dobson

Aviation attorney Gary C. Robb said potential factors and causes of the crash could include winds gusting to an estimated 20 mph (32 kph), pilot error, mechanical failure or pressure on Papillon Grand Canyon Helicopters to meet demand for the popular Grand Canyon air tours to the reservation.

Investigators are likely to pay special attention to Papillon’s EC-130 helicopter, which generally lacks a system to keep it from exploding on impact, denying passengers a few extra minutes to try to escape, Robb said.

Witnesses described a “horrible” scene of flames, smoke and small explosions.


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