Thursday, January 5, 2017

Robinson R22 BETA, JJ Helicopters Inc, N702JJ: Fatal accident occurred January 04, 2017 in San Pedro, California

The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident. 

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Long Beach, California
Robinson Helicopter Company; Torrance, California
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf 

JJ HELICOPTERS INC: http://registry.faa.gov/N702JJ

Location: San Pedro, CA
Accident Number: WPR17FA047
Date & Time: 01/04/2017, 1736 PST
Registration: N702JJ
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER R22 BETA
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel related
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Aerial Observation

On January 4, 2017, about 1736 Pacific standard time, a Robinson Helicopter Company (RHC) R22, N702JJ, collided with the water near San Pedro, California. The commercial pilot and the passenger sustained fatal injuries; the helicopter sustained substantial damage. JJ Helicopters was operating the helicopter under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The local photography flight departed Torrance Municipal Airport, Torrance, California, about 1635. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan had been filed.

The operator reported that the purpose of the flight was to take aerial photos of several cruise ships in a nearby harbor.

Recorded radar data showed that the helicopter departed from Torrance Municipal Airport and proceeded toward the Los Angeles harbor area. The helicopter made numerous circles, and the last portion of the track showed the helicopter on a southeasterly course crossing perpendicular to a jetty that terminated at a lighthouse marking the west side of the harbor mouth. When the helicopter was southwest of the lighthouse, it made a sweeping left 270° turn that went past the lighthouse and then began a slightly curved course parallel to the ocean side of the jetty. The last few targets indicate a sharp turn to the right and terminated on the inland side of the jetty. The data points for the last 11 minutes recorded mode C altitudes that varied between 100 ft and 700 ft.

Numerous witnesses on a cruise ship that was exiting the harbor mouth at the time of the accident reported that the helicopter started spinning as it descended straight down into the water. One witness commented that it was "just dark enough to make it difficult to see the helicopter, all you could see clearly were the [spinning] lights."

Several local agencies initiated a search, and the wreckage was located about 1015 on January 5, 2017. The wreckage was on the inland side of the jetty, and southwest of the lighthouse at the end of the jetty.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 42, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Helicopter
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 09/09/2016
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 09/09/2016
Flight Time: 815 hours (Total, all aircraft), 77 hours (Total, this make and model), 705 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 11 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 3 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft) 

The pilot had 90 hours total time in rotorcraft, and 45 as pilot-in-command in the accident make/model. His initial training was in fixed wing airplanes, and all helicopter flight time had occurred during the current year. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: ROBINSON HELICOPTER
Registration: N702JJ
Model/Series: R22 BETA
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Year of Manufacture: 2005
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 3791
Landing Gear Type: Skid;
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 12/18/2016, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1369 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 11 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 5000 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: O-360-J2A
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 145 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Fueling records established that the helicopter was last fueled on January 3, 2017, with the addition of 11.9 gallons of 100-octane aviation fuel. The owner flew the helicopter just before the accident flight, and said that 15 gallons of fuel remained at the conclusion of that flight.

Investigators drained the fuel tanks. Clear fluid was in the bottom of the buckets with blue fluid on top, and investigators estimated that the 5 gallons of blue fluid looked and smelled like 100-octane aviation fuel.

The pilot and passenger recorded their weights before takeoff. Based on these weights, the operator determined that the helicopter was within both longitudinal and lateral weight and balance limitations at takeoff and at the time of the accident. RHC computations concurred with this determination. Using weights provided by the coroner, RHC determined that the helicopter was slightly out of longitudinal limits at takeoff and at the time of the accident. 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Night
Observation Facility, Elevation: KTOA, 103 ft msl
Observation Time: 0147 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 8 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site:  285°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 2200 ft agl
Temperature/Dew Point:13°C / 11°C
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 20000 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 4 knots, 300°
Visibility (RVR): 
Altimeter Setting: 30.08 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV): 
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Torrance, CA (TOA)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Torrance, CA (TOA)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1635 PST
Type of Airspace: 

FAA Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin CE-09-35 contains a graph that illustrates the probability of carburetor icing for various temperature and relative humidity conditions. The conditions encountered in this accident (ambient temperature 55° F / dew point 52° F, 88% relative humidity), were in the area of serious icing at cruise power.

The passenger's camera was examined by the National Transportation Safety Board's Recorders Division. Most of the photographs were of Los Angeles harbor and several cruise ships in the area. The last photograph was an aerial shot of a cruise ship leaving the harbor area and depicted dark light conditions. The helicopter's location was outside of the breakwater and lighthouse at the entrance to the harbor. 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 33.706944, -118.257778 

The local agencies that recovered the helicopter reported that the helicopter came to rest upright in about 18 ft of water. The first responder dive team noted that the pilot was in the right seat, and the passenger was in the left seat; both victims still had their seat belts fastened. The pilot was wearing a helmet and an inflated life vest. All major components of the helicopter were recovered except the outboard 3/4 of one main rotor blade. The fracture surface at the separation point was jagged and angular. Multiple searches did not locate the missing portion of the main rotor blade.

The throttle, mixture, and carburetor heat controls were connected at both ends; the airframe structure was collapsed around the controls, and they would not move. The throttle arm at the carburetor was about 3/4 open. The mixture was in the full rich position. The carburetor heat control knob in the cockpit was in the full down or "OFF" position and unlocked. The slider on the carburetor heat airbox was in a midrange position; the airbox was deformed, and the slider cable was displaced.

There were no holes in the crankcase or cylinders that indicated a catastrophic failure of the engine. The tail pipe coloration was light gray with no oil residue. There were no rotational signatures between the cooling fan and scroll or the upper sheave and the airframe.

Investigators left the engine in place, and removed the valve covers. They manually rotated the crankshaft by turning the fan wheel. The crankshaft rotated freely, and the valves moved about the same amount of lift in firing order. The gears in the accessory case turned freely. Investigators obtained thumb compression on all cylinders in firing order.

A borescope inspection revealed no mechanical deformation on the valves, cylinder walls, or internal cylinder head.

Both main rotor blades were bent down at the hub, and then bent upward about 2 ft out from the hub. One blade separated at that point along a jagged angle. The other main rotor blade coned upward at that point; it retained its full length but had a tear at midspan from the trailing edge to the back of the spar. 

Medical And Pathological Information

The Los Angeles County Coroner, Los Angeles, California, completed an autopsy on the pilot and determined that the cause of death was drowning.

Toxicology testing of specimens from the pilot by the FAA's Bioaeronautical Science's Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, were negative for carbon monoxide, ethanol and tested drugs.

Additional Information

RHC Safety Notice (SN) SN-10 stresses the importance of instantly adding throttle and lowering the collective to maintain main rotor rpm in an emergency. It states that failure to do so can result in low rotor rpm stall, and the helicopter can fall at an extreme rate. It notes that failure to maintain main rotor rpm is a leading cause of fatal accidents in light helicopters.

SN-18 states that flying a helicopter in obscured visibility or even on a dark night can be fatal.

SN-19 notes that flying over water is very hazardous. It recommends that a pilot maintain 500 ft above ground level (agl) whenever possible, and avoid maneuvers over water below 200 ft agl.

SN-24 emphasizes that rotor stall due to low rpm causes a very high percentage of helicopter accidents, both fatal and non-fatal. It states that when rotor stall occurs above 40 to 50 ft, it will most likely be fatal.

SN-25 discusses carburetor ice. It stated that carburetor ice could cause engine stoppage, and was most likely to occur when there was high humidity or visible moisture, and the air temperature was below 70° F. It stated that even in generally dry air, local conditions such as a nearby body of water could be conducive to carburetor ice. It stated that during descent or autorotation, the pilot should ignore the carburetor air temperature gauge, and apply full carburetor heat. RHC published a revision to SN-25 in July 2012 stating that carburetor heat may be required on takeoff, and the carburetor heat control knob should be left unlatched unless it was obvious that conditions were not conducive to carburetor ice. It also noted that carburetor ice could form at outside air temperatures as high as 30° C (86° F).

SN-29 states that there have been a number of fatal accidents involving experienced pilots with many hours in airplanes, but limited experience flying helicopters. The ingrained reactions to an emergency could have fatal results. All of the pilot's helicopter time was attained in the current year and was just over 10% of his total time.

SN-31 notes that the governor can mask carburetor ice. With the throttle governor on, carburetor ice will not become apparent as a loss of either rpm or manifold pressure. The governor will automatically adjust throttle to maintain a constant rpm, which will also result in a constant manifold pressure. It states that when in doubt, the pilot should apply carburetor heat as required to keep the carburetor air temperature out of the yellow arc during hover, climb, or cruise, and apply full carburetor heat when the manifold pressure is below 18 inches.

Safety Notice 34 emphasizes that aerial survey and photography flights are high risk.

The R22 Pilot's Operating Handbook (POH) stated that a carburetor heat assist device was installed on the helicopter. The device correlated application of carburetor heat with changes in the collective setting. Lowering the collective mechanically added heat and raising collective reduced heat. The system included a latch at the control knob to lock the carburetor heat off when not required. The system contained a friction clutch that allowed the pilot to override the system. It instructed the pilot to readjust carburetor heat as necessary following any change in power. The POH included "set as required" for the carburetor heat line of the starting engines and run-up checklist, and "adjust carb heat as required" to the takeoff procedure in the normal procedures section of the POH.

NTSB Identification: WPR17FA047
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, January 04, 2017 in San Pedro, CA
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER R22 BETA, registration: N702JJ
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On January 4, 2017, about 1735 Pacific standard time, a Robinson R22, N702JJ, collided with the water near San Pedro, California. JJ Helicopters was operating the helicopter under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The commercial pilot and one passenger sustained fatal injuries. The helicopter sustained substantial damage during the accident sequence. The local photography flight departed Torrance Municipal Airport, Torrance, California, about 1635 PST. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan had been filed.

The operator reported that the purpose of the flight was to take aerial photos of several cruise ships in a nearby harbor. The helicopter departed from the operator's ramp area, and proceeded to the harbor. It made several orbits around a ship, and then witnesses reported that the helicopter began spinning as it went straight down into the water.

When the helicopter was 2 hours overdue, the operator reported it to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), and an alert notice (ALNOT) was issued.

Several local agencies initiated a search, and the wreckage was located about 1015 on January 5, 2017.

The local agencies reported that the helicopter came to rest upright in about 18 feet of water. All major components of the helicopter were recovered except the outboard section of a main rotor blade. The fracture surface at the separation point was jagged and angular.





The passenger of a helicopter that crashed into the Port of Los Angeles on Wednesday night was a veteran freelance photographer on assignment to capture photos of a rare trio of cruise ships inside the harbor.

Michael Justice, 61, of San Pedro, and pilot Christopher Reed, 41, of Hermosa Beach, were aboard the Robinson R22 Beta when it crashed near the breakwater that juts out from Cabrillo Beach, killing them. Their bodies were recovered from the aircraft’s wreckage Thursday morning.

Justice was a port photographer and had commissioned a flight on Wednesday after three cruise ships made a rare stopover at the harbor, said port spokesman Phillip Sanfield. The port, he said, doesn’t usually get a visit from three cruises at one time.

He wanted to capture the vessels in the fading sunlight, Sanfield said.

Reed and Justice took off from Zamperini Field in Torrance in one of the copters registered to JJ Helicopters Inc. and flew over the harbor.

Several passengers aboard a cruise ship told authorities that the helicopter circled one of the ships three times before it went down about 5:45 p.m., Sanfield said.

Several other people in the area called 911 notifying dispatchers of the aircraft, which was believed to have crashed near the Angels Gate Lighthouse. The lighthouse sits at the end of the breakwater.

The U.S. Coast Guard and Los Angeles Port Police searched for the wreckage of the helicopter, but did not find it.

Justice and Reed never reported back to the Torrance airbase, Sanfield said.

Then on Thursday, police used sonar equipment to locate the aircraft.

Justice worked with the port since 2010 and has shot for several publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, National Geographic Adventurer and Time magazine. He photographed Mother Teresa in Calcutta.

“He was really an extended member of the harbor family,” Sanfield said. “He lived and breathed on the docks.”

Former Daily Breeze newspaper photojournalist Branimir Kvartuc said he often worked with the freelance photographer in the Torrance area.

“He had a million stories to tell, but never forced them on you,” Kvartuc said.

When Kvartuc left the newspaper for a job at Los Angeles Councilman Joe Buscaino’s office, he knew he would see Justice again.

Kvartuc often ran into Justice at the harbor, an area that Buscaino represents. During a recent conversation, the friends talked about their separate trip’s next month to Cuba and how they planned to meet up.

“It’s almost in a way ... an accomplishment as a photographer to go out doing your job,” he said.

Reed was an accomplished pilot, Los Angeles Port Police Chief Thomas Gazsi said at a news conference Thursday, adding that he “will be greatly missed.”

The Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the cause of the crash.


Story and video:   http://www.latimes.com





SAN PEDRO, LOS ANGELES (KABC) --  Two bodies were pulled from the wreckage of a helicopter that crashed off the coast of San Pedro, according to officials.

Authorities stated during a press conference Thursday afternoon that the bodies were presumed to be that of photographer Michael Justice and pilot Christopher Reed.

There was no official confirmation of the identities, Port Police stated.

Officials said crews located the wreckage just inside the break wall Thursday morning. The helicopter was attempting to take photographs of a cruise ship when it reportedly crashed in the ocean.

Eyewitness News learned that an R-22 Beta helicopter left the Torrance Airport around 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday. The helicopter belongs to JJ Helicopters, a Torrance-based company.

The Port Police said a pilot and one passenger were on board the helicopter. Officials said passengers on a cruise ship reported seeing a helicopter go down in the port area.

Casey Warren told Eyewitness News Justice was in the helicopter and was going to photograph the cruise ship.

"A sunset shot, we booked it for an hour," Warren explained. "I was supposed to be on the craft with him and I got booted because the R-44 that we wanted wasn't available so he went up in a 22. It only seats one."

Warren said he went to JJ Helicopters after Justice didn't return home Wednesday night.

"He never came home. I got worried so I started calling and I figured I'd come down here to see if his car is still here and that's his car," Warren said pointing to a white vehicle in the parking lot.

Friends and family described Justice as a renowned photographer who traveled the world for his work. Some of his highlights included contributing to National Geographic, flying with the Blue Angels and photographing Mother Theresa.

The U.S. Coast Guard, who came to assist in the search, closed the Los Angeles Harbor entrance as efforts to find something continued. Officials announced the port had re-opened.

Cmdr. Romulus Matthews with the Coast Guard said searchers were scoured an area of roughly 3-5 nautical square miles near Cabrillo Beach.

The search was called off Wednesday evening amid wet weather, which created low visibility. The search resumed Thursday morning when the wreckage was located.

Story and video:   http://abc7.com




SAN PEDRO, Calif. (FOX 11 / CNS) - Searchers found a helicopter that crashed in the Los Angeles Harbor area near San Pedro, along with the remains of two people aboard on Thursday.

The helicopter was operated by J. J. Helicopters, which reported that the aircraft left Torrance Municipal Airport around 4:30 p.m. Wednesday but failed to return, said Phillip Sanfield of the Port of Los Angeles.
  
The crash of Robinson R22 Beta triggered a multi-agency search after it was reported at 5:40 p.m. Wednesday near the harbor breakwater. The search was focused on an area near the Angels Gate lighthouse, one of two entrance to the Port of Los Angeles, Sanfield said.

About 11 this morning, authorities found the wreckage of the helicopter in the water, with the remains of two people aboard, Sanfield said.

Authorities have not positively identified either victim, but one of them was believed to be Michael Justice, a former news photographer who was on assignment for the Port of Los Angeles. He was taking aerial shots of three cruise ships in port on Thursday, Sanfield told the Daily Breeze.

In a Facebook posting, Los Angeles City Councilman Joe Buscaino said Justice "was one of the nicest and most talented photographers I had ever met. My deepest sympathies go out to all of his family, friends and colleagues. He will be missed.''

Justice's godson, Casey Warren, told ABC7 that the helicopter had been booked for an hour.

"I was supposed to be on the rotorcraft with him, and I got booted because the Robinson R22 BETA we wanted wasn't available, so he went up in a 22 and it only seats one," Warren said.

"He never came home. I got worried so I started calling," Warren said.

"I figured I'd come down here and see if his car is still here; that's his car."

Justice traveled the world for his work and took photos for National Geographic. He also flew with the Blue Angels, and took photos of Mother Teresa.

The U.S. Coast Guard and crews from the Los Angeles city and county fire departments mounted a search along with boat crews from the Long Beach Fire Department, said U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class SondraKay Kneen.

Multiple witnesses aboard a cruise ship reported seeing the helicopter go down. The aircraft was described by the witnesses as a small black helicopter that hit the water near the harbor breakwall, according to the Coast Guard.

The Angels Gate entrance to the port was closed while the search was conducted, but the other entrance to the port -- about two miles away, toward the entrance to the Port of Long Beach -- remained open, and Port of Los Angeles operations were continuing, Sanfield said.

Underwater sound-detecting devices were deployed in an effort to find the rotorcraft, Sanfield said.


Story and video:  http://www.foxla.com




Search efforts will continue Thursday in the water around the Port of Los Angeles after a tour helicopter was seen crashing near the breakwater the prior evening. 

Los Angeles Port Police used sonar equipment and U.S. Coast Guard boats searched through the night in an attempt to locate the missing aircraft, port spokesman Phillip Sanfield said. The black Robinson R22 Beta helicopter and the two people aboard are still unaccounted for, he said.

“We are pretty confident there is a chopper in the water,” he said.

The helicopter was reported down about 5:45 p.m. by a passenger aboard a cruise ship that was departing the harbor, according to U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Andrea Anderson.

Several other people in the area called 911 notifying dispatchers of the aircraft, which was believed to have crashed near the Angels Gate Lighthouse. The lighthouse sits at the end of the breakwater that juts out from Cabrillo Beach.

The helicopter is registered to JJ Helicopters Inc. and took off from Zamperini Field in Torrance for an aerial photo shoot, Anderson said. The Torrance-based company provides tours.

The pilot and passenger did not report back to Torrance airbase, Sanfield said.

The Federal Aviation Administration does not have any confirmation of an aircraft down, according to the agency’s spokesman Ian Gregor.

The Coast Guard says it is trying to determine if any distress calls were made.

Port police planned to use sonar equipment again on Thursday during the search. Authorities have not found debris or passengers in the water.

“As soon as sonar detects something, L.A. Port Police has a dive team and will deploy them,” Sanfield said.

Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Harbor entrance near the Angels Gate Lighthouse was closed for search efforts, and a 1,000-foot safety zone was in effect. Cruises and cargo ships were rerouted to the Long Beach entrance, so operations could continue at the Port of L.A., Sanfield said.

Story and comments:  http://www.latimes.com



Authorities late Wednesday were searching the waters off the Port of Los Angeles for a helicopter that reportedly ditched into the water near the Angels Gate Lighthouse with two aboard, officials said.

Several passengers on an outbound cruise ship, the Star Princess, called 911 about 5:45 p.m. to report seeing “a small black helicopter approach the water and crash,” said Coast Guard Petty Officer Andrea Anderson.

She said searchers believe the helicopter was a Robinson R-22 that took off from Torrance Municipal Airport with two people on board.

The Coast Guard has not been able to make contact with the helicopter, which bears a tail number of N702JJ.

Federal Aviation Administration records show a Robinson R-22 with the number is registered to JJ Helicopters Inc., a Torrance-based company that offers helicopter tours of Los Angeles and aerial photo flights.

The aircraft was manufactured in 2005, according to the registry.

The helicopter was seen near the lighthouse just outside the 2.1-mile-long breakwater that jets out from Cabrillo Beach in San Pedro. Port of Los Angeles spokesman Phillip Sanfield said reports put the helicopter around Buoy 3.

Assisting in the search were a Coast Guard helicopter from Point Mugu and Coast Guard boat crews, Los Angeles Port Police and Los Angeles County Fire Department, Anderson said.

No signs of the helicopter or its occupants had been found, Anderson said, but he added that rescuers planned to continue their search late into the night.

The helicopter reportedly circled the cruise ship before crashing, according to a Facebook comment from a woman who said her parents witnessed the impact.

“My parents are on the cruise liner that the helicopter crashed near. It is so shocking and sad!!” Karah Street Ludington wrote. “They said it flew around them a few times and then went into a spin and crashed. Disappeared into the water fast. They haven’t seen anyone surface.”

Last week, three people were injured when a Robinson R-44 helicopter made a “hard landing” on Mount Baldy.

Robinson R-22 helicopters have been involved in 160 fatal crashes, with 239 deaths, according to the National Transportation Safety Board.

The Torrance-based manufacturer came under scrutiny from a New Zealand aviation agency last year, which suspended the use of Robinson helicopters after a series of crashes.

Source:   http://www.ocregister.com



SAN PEDRO (CBSLA.com) — Crews from multiple agencies were scouring the waters off the coast of San Pedro Wednesday evening for a missing helicopter carrying two people.

According to the U.S. Coast Guard, a Robinson R22 took off from Zamperini Field in Torrance this afternoon and did not return. Based on radar logs, the helicopter lifted off at around 4:35 p.m. and made its way to Terminal Island. It disappeared off the radar at 5:37 p.m. There were no distress calls sent from the helicopter. In a late evening news conference, Port Police Chief Tom Gazsi said two people were believed to be aboard the helicopter, a pilot and a passenger.

Gazsi said several people aboard a cruise ship reported seeing the helicopter crash.

“Pretty much, they got really close and it looked like it tilted sideways, and it looked like it went under,” witness Steven Nocon told KCAL9.

Gazsi said the search was focused on an area with about a one-mile radius near Cabrillo Beach and Angels Gate Park, inside the breakwater. As of 9:30 p.m., no helicopter or debris had been found. Crews were scanning the water with sonar. The search would continue into the night, Gazsi said.

Los Angeles Harbor was closed off to vessel traffic.

Los Angeles police and Los Angeles County Fire were assisting in the search.

Story and video:  http://losangeles.cbslocal.com

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