A helicopter was reported to have crashed Wednesday in the Los Angeles Harbor area near San Pedro, prompting a multi-agency search for the aircraft and possible victims.
The crash was reported at 5:40 p.m. near the harbor breakwater, authorities said.
The U.S. Coast Guard and crews from the Los Angeles city and county fire departments mounted a search along with boat crews from the Long Beach Fire Department, but as of about 7:30 p.m. no aircraft, victim or debris had been located and county and Long Beach Fire Department boats were released from the scene, according to Margaret Stewart of the Los Angeles Fire Department.
“Los Angeles Fire Department boats are on standby while Port Police establish a search grid,” she said.
Multiple witnesses aboard a cruise ship reported seeing the helicopter go down, but nothing had been found as of about 9 p.m., according to Port of Los Angeles spokesman Phillip Sanfield.
The aircraft was described by the witnesses, who were aboard an outbound cruise ship, as a small black helicopter that hit the water near the harbor breakwall, according to the Coast Guard, which dispatched a 45-foot response boat and a helicopter to assist in the investigation.
The harbor entrance was closed to all vessel traffic while the search continued for a possible debris field, according to the Coast Guard, which announced that a 1,000-foot safety zone had been put in place.
–City News Service
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