Investigators say the helicopter carrying Kobe Bryant missed clearing a hilltop by 6 to 9 metres
- The helicopter that crashed on Sunday killing Kobe Bryant and eight others did not have a terrain warning system that could have alerted the pilot of the hills below him, according to investigators.
- An official from theNational Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) said in a briefing Tuesday that the descent rate of the aircraft was 2,000 feet (609 metres) per minute, which she referred to as a "high energy impact crash."
- The official added that the helicopter missed clearing a hill by 20 to 30 feet (6 to 9 metres).
- The officials added that the helicopter didn't have a terrain awareness warning system, which provides terrain information to the pilot.
- Investigators found the remains of all nine victims on Tuesday. Four of the victims, including Bryant, were identified by the Los Angeles coroner's office.
- For more stories, visit Business Insider South Africa.
The Sikorsky S-76 helicopter that crashed while transporting NBA icon Kobe Bryant and eight others did not have a warning system that could have alerted the pilot of the hills below him, according to investigators.
No one survived the Sunday crash in Calabasas, California, roughly 30 miles northwest of Los Angeles. Investigators have found the remains of all nine victims by Tuesday, the Los Angeles coroner's office said.
Four victims, including Bryant, have been positively identified: John Altobelli, 56, Sarah Chester, 45, and pilot Ara Zobayan, 50.
On Tuesday, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) held a briefing and gave updated information about its investigation.
NTSB board member Jennifer Homendy said the descent rate of the aircraft was 2,000 feet (609 metres) per minute, which she referred to as a "high energy impact crash."
Homendy said that the helicopter didn't have a terrain awareness warning system (TAWS), which provides terrain information to the pilot and prevents unintentional impacts with the ground.
The NTSB in 2006 called on the FAA to require all US-registered helicopters that carry at least six people to be equipped with the system, but according to Homendy they "failed to act."
According to The Wall Street Journal, officials have estimated that installing the system costs between $25,000 to $40,000. The Sikorsky S-76 helicopter was rolled out before the FAA required TAWS on new aircraft, the Journal said.
Videos from the day of the crash indicate that foggy conditions may have contributed to poor visibility.
Homendy added that the helicopter was 20 to 30 feet (6 to 9 metres) from clearing a hill before the crash.
On Monday, Homendy said the aircraft did not have a black box on board, which was not a requirement for the aircraft.
Homendy said the helicopter circled for 12 minutes while awaiting clearance from air-traffic controllers. Then the helicopter climbed to about 2,300 feet (610 metres) to avoid a cloud layer and shortly after started a descending left turn.
The last radar contact with the helicopter was at about 9:45 a.m.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said the department was protecting the area surrounding the crash to prevent trespassing.
Bryant was a fixture on the Los Angeles Lakers for his entire 20-year career. He was the fourth all-time scorer in the NBA - having been passed by LeBron James on Saturday - and won five NBA championships.
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