Published: Thu, February 15, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Britons killed in Grand Canyon helicopter crash named

Britons killed in Grand Canyon helicopter crash named

Jason Hill's girlfriend and two other Britons survived Saturday's crash but are critically ill in hospital, The Evening Standard reports.

Ellie Milward, 29, and Jonathan Udall, 32, as well as Jennifer Barham, 39, and pilot Scott Booth, 42, were all injured in the crash.

The group had gone away to celebrate Stuart Hill's 30th birthday and had saved up for a year for the trip.

Sean Reeves, 31, a solicitor from the New Forest, went to college with Mr Hill, 30, and said: "He was simply a great guy the life and soul of the party". Three other friends, also from the United Kingdom, and the pilot are fighting for their lives in hospital.

Ms Dobson's father Peter Dobson said Becky was "full of life and looking forward to going to Vegas for her boyfriend's 30th birthday to celebrate". "The whole thing is just bad", he added, according to the Telegraph.

Jonathan Udall, from Worthing, whose family live in Southampton, is now being treated in hospital.

Lionel Douglass, who was attending a wedding in the area, said he watched in disbelief as a woman emerged from the fiery wreckage.

"I just felt awful", Fujimoto said.

A witness said he saw flames and black smoke spewing from the crash site, heard explosions and saw victims bleeding and badly burned. "It's a very tragic incident and I would like to personally commend all the first responders who were involved in this rescue effort and recovery operation". Windy conditions and the rugged terrain made it hard to reach the wreckage.

'We don't know much more than what has been reported in the papers and we are just desperately trying to get a flight over at the moment.

Another three passengers - including Jason's girlfriend - and the pilot, survived after spending the night in critical condition at the bottom of a mile-deep valley in a 50mph storm.

Claire Rowe, chief executive at Shoosmiths LLP, told The Argus: "Jason Hill was a corporate lawyer within our Milton Keynes office who was well respected and loved by all those who worked with him at the firm".

Becky reportedly worked as a receptionist at the Vets4Pets practice in Worthing, West Sussex, and had dreams of becoming a veterinary nurse.

The helicopter, operated by Papillon Airways in Las Vegas, was an EC-130 B4.

The National Transportation Safety board says it can't say with any certainty yet what caused Saturday's crash.

Rescuers had to battle strong winds as they hiked down to the crash site in the remote spot in the canyon's West Rim. "Our top priority is the care and needs of our passengers and our staff", Brenda Halvorson, CEO of parent company Papillon Group, said in a statement, according to ABC News.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer said the Eurocopter EC130 aircraft sustained considerable damage.

Investigators are taking a good look at the wreckage of the aircraft.

A UK Foreign Office spokesperson said: "We are providing support to the families of six British visitors involved in a helicopter accident at the Grand Canyon on 10 February, and we are in close contact with the USA emergency services".

Federal authorities are investigating the crash.

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