Following yesterday’s fatal helicopter crash in the East River, State Senator Daniel Squadron, Assemblywoman Joan Millman, and City Council Member Steve Levin, along with other local elected officials, have called for “a complete ban on all tourist helicopters from Manhattan’s dangerous air corridors, including the city’s rivers and harbors.”
According to Senator Squadron:
Yesterday’s tragedy is another clear sign: nonessential helicopters in Manhattan don’t make sense for passengers, pilots, or local residents. My colleagues and I have long called for better regulation of helicopters in New York. There are still many questions about yesterday’s flight. The fact that this helicopter was a privately-run tour from a heliport that was not supposed to run tours shows that today’s regulations don’t work. Simply put, nonessential flights in and out of Manhattan pose too great a risk.
Assemblywoman Millman said:
Yesterday’s unfortunate accident again demonstrates the urgent need to immediately end tourist helicopter tours. We have witness[ed] too many incidents. The City claims these tours generate needed funds, but at what price! Our sympathy for the Nicholson family who lost their daughter Sonia Marra Nicholson in this horrific crash.
Council Member Levin added:
Yesterday’s accident was a horrific and unnecessary tragedy. My deepest condolences go out to all those who were affected by the accident. As our communities have been saying for years, sightseeing and other nonessential helicopters are not just nuisances, they are dangerous. It is time for the city to create a real helicopter policy that protects the safety of both New Yorkers and the millions of tourists who visit our city every year. It is time for a total ban of nonessential helicopters.