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Two high school friends among 5 killed in NYC helicopter crash
March 13,2018   By:Xinhua
NEW YORK, March 13, 2018 -- Two of the five passengers killed in Sunday's helicopter crash in New York City's East River are high school friends who were sightseeing in the Big Apple.
Brian McDaniel, a nearly two-year veteran of the Fire-Rescue Department of Dallas, Texas, was visiting his longtime friend Trevor Cadigan, who had been living in New York since October 2017 after taking a job with a business magazine, according to a report by NBC 4 New York on Monday.
The two friends went to Texas' Bishop Lynch High School together and graduated in 2010.
An Instagram video posted by Cadigan appeared to show him smiling as the helicopter took off from Kearny, New Jersey. Another passenger flashed a thumbs up.
The other three passengers killed in the crash are Carla Vallejos Blanco, a tourist from Argentina and two helicopter employees, Tristan Hill and Daniel Thompson, said Daily News New York.
Only the pilot, identified by media outlets as 33-year-old Richard Vance, survived.
The cause of the crash is unknown. The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board is investigating.
NBC 4 New York reported that Vance told investigators it was possible one of the passengers inadvertently hit the fuel cut-off switch with a piece of equipment, which may have caused the engine to sputter and the chopper to plunge into the river.
The Eurocopter AS350 went down in the waters between New York City's boroughs of Manhattan and Queens just after 7:00 p.m. local time (2300 GMT), according to the Federal Aviation Administration.
The helicopter reported an engine failure during a mayday call to air traffic control, according to an audio posted to liveatc.net. The audio revealed that the helicopter was upside down in the water as rescue boats arrived at the scene.
A video posted on Twitter shows a red helicopter landing hard in the water and then flipping on its side as its rotors beat the water.
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