Yorkshire helicopter crash victims named by police

·2-min read

Police have named the two victims killed in a helicopter crash in a North Yorkshire field on Monday.

Ian Macdonald, 66, died in the incident near his home in the village of Burton in Lonsdale shortly before midday.

Also in the helicopter was German exchange student Admarsu Birhan, 16, who locals said had been living with a nearby family for the last three months.

Photos from the scene of the crash showed smoke billowing into the sky as “dozens” of emergency service vehicles attended the scene. It is not yet clear what caused the crash.

North Yorkshire Police said a full investigation has been launched and the Air Accidents Investigation Branch on Tuesday sent a team to the crash site.

Tributes were paid to Mr Macdonald today who was “very well-liked” in his village and known within the community despite not having lived in the area for a very long time.

Craven district councillor Stuart Handley, who lives in Burton in Lonsdale, said: “My condolences go to the family of Ian Macdonald and also the German exchange student’s family.

“Ian hadn’t been living in the village for a very long time but he made himself very well known within the community.

“He was a very well-liked person within the village.”

Mr Handley said Burton in Lonsdale was a friendly village and Mr Macdonald was often seen in its shop and pub.

“He would call me up if I saw him out and about and I’d go and have a word with him,” he added.

“Or in the shop if he was having a coffee or a pint down the local. He fitted in well.”

Mr Macdonald was reportedly coming in to land his own Guimbal Cabri G2 aircraft near his home when the crash happened in a field near the village, which is close to the border with Lancashire and Cumbria.

North Yorkshire Police said: “The investigation into the full circumstances surrounding the helicopter crash near Burton in Lonsdale continues.

“We can now provide the names of those who we believe to be the two people who sadly died in the crash.

“We believe they were local man 66-year-old Ian Macdonald and 16-year-old Admarsu Birhan, a German national.

“Formal identification is yet to take place.”

The Air Accidents Investigation Branch confirmed on Tuesday that it had sent a team to the crash site.

Additional reporting by PA

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