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Helicopter makes emergency water landing

A helicopter made an emergency landing in the water behind the Beach Club Resort in Fort Morgan Thursday afternoon....

Posted: Jun 12, 2018 2:32 AM
Updated: Jun 12, 2018 2:32 AM

A helicopter made an emergency landing in the water behind the Beach Club Resort in Fort Morgan Thursday afternoon.

Thankfully, no one was hurt and the pilot made it out on his own.

It's still unclear what went wrong with the helicopter, but witnesses say the pilot did the right thing. There are reports the helicopter's engine failed.

And that ought to make vacation memorable for folks on vacation in Fort Morgan. The helicopter landed right in front of Bill Snedegar. He now has a pretty good story to take back home to Kentucky.

"Well it's so bizarre I don't think anybody will believe it...as big as this beach is, and the thing landing right in front of us."

He watched from the water as the helicopter crept closer to him and his wife and then just dropped into the water.

"It was kind of scary. I was so shocked I just didn't move at all, I was ready to just get under the water, get away from the blades," said Snedegar. "I told my doctor, I said maybe I'll get ate by a shark, I didn't think a helicopter would land on me, ya know."

Missy Richard and Tracey Hilton from Texas were right there too, but they had a much different reaction.

"We think, wow he's coming this direction, and he's getting lower, and he travels a short distance after that and just falls into the water, and everybody ran," said Richard.

"My daughter said that's the fastest I've seen you move in a long time, but yea, I was running," Hilton said with a laugh.

And while they made a run for it, others pulled out their phones. Quick videos and pictures show the crowd that also wanted a piece of the action. The helicopter landed just shy of a busy stretch of the beach, near the Beach Club. That has witnesses commending the pilot for his quick thinking.

"For nothing to come out of it, except the helicopter to land like that, was great," said Hilton.

The pilot removed the engine and the fuel tank just after the crash but had to wait for FAA officials to move the helicopter out of the water. The helicopter stayed in the water for hours as beachgoers went about their days.

That gave time for a good photo op for folks taking a stroll along the water. Still too close for comfort for the ones with a front row seat, witnesses said.

The pilot didn't want to talk, so we don't know exactly what happened.

Witness tell us the helicopter was on its way to New Orleans from Destin.

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Today was hot and tomorrow will be as well. But slightly below average temperatures move in as we see a dip in the jet stream.
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