Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Robinson R44 Raven II, N4529J: Fatal accident occurred July 19, 2021 in Manteo, Dare County, North Carolina

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Greensboro, North Carolina

Rotorcraft crashed under unknown circumstances in the Alligator River.

Star Quest LLC

Date: 19-JUL-21
Time: 01:07:00Z
Regis#: N4529J
Aircraft Make: ROBINSON
Aircraft Model: R44
Event Type: ACCIDENT
Highest Injury: FATAL
Total Fatal: 2
Flight Crew: 1
Pax: 1
Aircraft Missing: No
Activity: PERSONAL
Flight Phase: EN ROUTE (ENR)
Operation: 91

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigation may contact them by email, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email You can also call the NTSB Response Operations Center at 844-373-9922 or 202-314-6290.

MANTEO, North Carolina  (WNCT) — The bodies of the two Franklin County men who were in the helicopter crash in the Albemarle Sound earlier this week were found on Thursday.

The Tyrrell County Sheriff’s Office posted on its Facebook page that responders recovered the body of John Arant, 35 of Glade Hill, Virginia, and his brother, Alan Arant 36, also of Glade Hill, Virginia. Alan Arant was the pilot of the aircraft.

Both men were reported missing after their Robinson R44 helicopter crashed in the Alligator River near Manteo. Wreckage of the plane was first found Monday around 9:10 p.m., which led to Coast Guard and other agencies searching for the two men.

The two men in the aircraft departed from Mecklenburg Brunswick Regional Airport in Brodnax, Virginia, around 6:40 p.m. on Monday and were heading to the Dare County Regional Airport the same evening.

Over 38 hours during the search, the Coast Guard said agencies that assisted covered 3,303 miles. The cause of the crash has not been determined.

The Coast Guard-led search included the following assets and agencies: 

A Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City
A MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter aircrew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City
A 29-foot Response Boat-Small boatcrew from Coast Guard Station Elizabeth City
N.C. Marine Patrol
N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission
Tyrell County Sheriff’s Department
Tyrell County Emergency Management
Tyrell County Fire Department
Washington County Emergency Management 
Craven County Emergency Management
Hertford County Emergency Management
N.C. State Highway Patrol
Sydney Fire Department
Tow Boat U.S. Oregon Inlet

Tyrrell County Sheriff

On 7/19/2021, the Dare County Emergency Communications was notified of an overdue helicopter flight from Virginia to Manteo.  The two men in the aircraft departed from Mecklenburg Brunswick Regional Airport in Virginia and planned to land at the Dare County Regional Airport the same evening.

Emergency responders were notified after a concerned friend lost communication with the two people aboard a Robinson R44 helicopter at 6:40 p.m., Monday. A multi-agency search was initiated and debris from the helicopter was discovered during the course of the search at the mouth of the Alligator River.

On Thursday 7/22/2021, the unified command of the United States Coast Guard, Tyrrell County Sheriff’s Office, North Carolina Wildlife, and the North Carolina Marine Patrol, and the US Fish & Wildlife, along with North Carolina Emergency Management was notified that one of the occupants from the aircraft was located in the Albemarle sound.  Responders recovered the body of John Arant, 35 of Virginia. Shortly afterwards, located the body of his brother, Alan Arant 36, of Virginia, who was the pilot of the aircraft.

The Tyrrell County Sheriff’s office, as well as the Tyrrell County Emergency Management Office sends it’s most sincerest condolences to the Arant family during this painful time.

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