Four people – three employees with the Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office and one worker with the county’s fire department – were killed when a sheriff’s department helicopter crashed in New Mexico crashed on late Saturday near the city of Las Vegas. They were returning from helping firefighters tackle a wildfire. The helicopter “Metro 2” was believed to be a Bell UH1-H Huey. The sheriff’s office has used its helicopters to provide aerial firefighting and other assistance across the state. Authorities did not identify those who died, say what led to the crash or give any other details.
“Today, our hearts are broken by the tragic and distressing news that we lost four of the state’s finest public servants, killed in the line of duty,” State Department of Public Safety Cabinet Secretary Jason Bowie said in a statement. Albuquerque police Chief Harold Medina tweeted, “Prayers for our brothers and sisters in the county and all those effected by the loss suffered as a result of this tragic accident.” It was not immediately clear what may have caused the crash. Both the Federal Aviation Administration and National Transportation Safety Board were expected to investigate the crash.