Pompano Beach, Fla. – Two people were killed and four others injured when a Broward Sheriff’s Office Fire Rescue helicopter crashed into an apartment building in Pompano Beach Monday morning, officials confirmed.
According to the National Transportation Safety Board, one person in the helicopter was killed along with another person on the ground.
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Broward Sheriff Gregory Tony identified the BSO captain who died in the crash as 50-year-old Terrison Jackson, who had been with the agency for 19 years.
Tony said he had known Jackson personally for more than 14 years.
“Derison is a rock star. He’s the best, the brightest among us. He bleeds this business in and out all day,” the sheriff said. “There are almost 6,000 people in this agency. I’m not going to meet everyone, I’m not going to meet, but that man I know. I know very well. His effort and dedication to this community – impeccable.
Tony confirmed that a woman inside the apartment building had been killed. He said two other BSO personnel in the helicopter crawled out and survived.
The crash was reported just after 8:45 a.m. in the area of North Dixie Highway and Atlantic Boulevard, about a half-mile southwest of Pompano Beach Airpark.
The Federal Aviation Administration confirmed that three people were on board a Eurocopter EC135 helicopter that “crashed into a structure.” Just after 10 a.m. above the Sky 10 scene, there was a large hole in the roof of an apartment building in the area with charred debris.
RAW Footage: Eyewitness Video of Helicopter Crash/Aftermath at Pompano Beach
The video was posted on Facebook Shows smoke coming from the helicopter.
Pompano Beach spokeswoman Sandra King said two employees and two civilians inside the apartment building were hospitalized after the crash.
BSO spokeswoman Veda Coleman-Wright later confirmed that all four were taken to Broward Health North and listed in fair condition.
Video sent to Local 10 News shows two men in uniform sitting on a roof near the crash site.
“Did they jump?” A witness is heard saying in the video.
“Yes,” replied another witness.
“These (expletive) saved their lives,” said the first witness.
Another close-up video shows the two coming down from the roof after first responders and witnesses placed a ladder against the building.
Local 10 News reporter Samir Nefsi spoke with the father and sister of the two injured civilians.
They said the brothers were alone in their apartment when the accident happened.
“I am trying to find out what is happening to my brothers. They are in the hospital and I got a phone call from my son, I don’t know what’s going on,” said the victim’s sister.
Another resident of the apartment building said he was inside his home when he heard a loud noise.
“When I was inside, it was ‘pop, pop, pop, pop.’ There was fire (inaudible) everywhere,” he said.
Dixie Highway is currently closed between Northeast Fifth Street and Northeast 10th Street. Motorists are asked to avoid the area.
The FAA confirmed it will investigate the cause of the crash, with the NTSB in charge of the investigation.
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