Witness recounts events surrounding fatal helicopter crash

Local News

NORTH BRANCH TOWNSHIP, WYOMING COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — We now know the name of the person killed in the helicopter crash. Officials at the Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital in Sayre identify him as Dr. Sanjay Kansara, an anesthesiologist at the Sayre campus. The FAA is investigating why the helicopter crashed.

The Mehoopany Fire Department is one the fire departments that responded to the crash last night. An FAA investigator is at the crash site. State police say the helicopter crashed at about 9:30 Thursday night into an area known as the Forkston Mountain.

Troopers confirm the helicopter was flying from the Queen City Airport near Allentown to the Bradford County Airport near Towanda. It disappeared from radar at about 9:30.. One person was killed. A medical helicopter spotted the crash site.

“They were in the area for a call. It had nothing to do with this. They were just up in the air. My belief is they saw smoke and fire because it was a high impact crash. There was a fire started after the crash that alerted them. They called it in,” PSP Master Trooper Deanna Piekanski said.

Lori Haines lives in the crash area and heard a helicopter Thursday night.

“I heard the helicopter over there about 1:30. This morning I saw ambulances and trucks, more people. That’s when I realized something was wrong,” Haines said.

The helicopter she heard was Life Flight. Haines says the crash site is located in very rough terrain.

“It’s tough terrain. You better be a good hiker, an experienced hiker to hike these mountains,” Haines said.

According to Guthrie officials, Dr. Kansara enjoyed the freedom of being able to fly from his home near Allentown to Guthrie’s Sayre campus.

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