NTSB says Bryant helicopter engines showed no signs of catastrophic internal failure


FILE PHOTO: Personnel collect debris while working with investigators at the helicopter crash site of NBA star Kobe Bryant in Calabasas, California, U.S., January 28, 2020. REUTERS/Patrick T. Fallon

(Reuters) – The engines of the Sikorsky S-76 helicopter that crashed into a steep hillside killing basketball superstar Kobe Bryant and 8 others near Calabasas, California on Jan. 26 showed no evidence of a “catastrophic internal failure,” the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said Friday.

The NTSB investigative update said “viewable sections of the engines showed no evidence of an uncontained or catastrophic internal failure.”

The board plans to disassemble and further examine the engines, which were subjected to a post-crash fire. The NTSB also quoted a witness who heard the helicopter in the mist, saw it descend fast and then reported it “started to roll to the left such that he caught a glimpse of its belly” soon before the crash.

Reporting by David Shepardson and Steve Gorman; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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