The helicopters crashed while flying near the town of Villa Castelli in La Rioja province, about 730 miles northwest of Buenos Aires, after an explosion occurred. Photographs showed the burning and smoking wreckage of the helicopters on the ground in dry scrubland with people gathered nearby. Both Argentine pilots, identified as Juan Carlos Castillo and Roberto Abate, were killed in the crash. Argentine news network “24 Hours reports” that weather is not believed to have been a factor because conditions were clear. Aeronautical experts believe that the two helicopters collided but officially “the causes of the crash are not known.” The sudden death of our fellow French nationals is a cause of immense sadness,” a French presidential statement said.