A Civil Security helicopter crashed this Sunday afternoon in Villard-de-Lans, southwest of Grenoble. Five people were on board, members of the crew and rescuers who were going on a rescue operation, indicates the prefecture of Isère.
The Minister of the Interior Gérald Darmanin indicates that the civil security mechanic present in the helicopter died, despite the care provided by the rescuers. “The director general and civil security personnel share the grief of the relatives and colleagues of the deceased flight engineer and provide support to the wounded,” tweeted Civil Security.
The four other people on board – a doctor from Samu, two high mountain gendarmes and the pilot – are injured. They were evacuated to the Grenoble University Hospital. “One of them has serious injuries, the others are more slightly injured,” said the prefecture. All were going to the area to come to the aid of a mountain biker, according to information from the released Dauphiné.
The Grenoble prosecutor’s office has opened an investigation and seized the air transport research section based in Roissy, as well as the Isère gendarmerie group, announced the Grenoble public prosecutor, Eric Vaillant. Two investigators from the research section are due to arrive at the scene in the evening and will be joined by three others on Monday, he said.
Shortly after the tragedy, images posted on social media showed thick black smoke, visible several hundred meters from the crash site. Three helicopters took part in the rescue operations, which are now over.
Shortly after 8 p.m., the President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron paid tribute to the deceased mechanic. “The great family of civil security has lost one of its heroes,” tweeted the head of state. “The Nation shares the grief of those close to them. Four of his comrades are injured. Our thoughts are with them.” The Minister of Solidarity and Health and former deputy for Isère, Olivier Véran, for his part said he was “upset” by this crash.
The causes of the accident remain for the time being undetermined, specifies the prefecture. Gérald Darmanin will go there this Monday morning “to meet the gendarmes and civil security agents”.
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