Governor, five others dead in Philippine helicopter crash

The helicopter carrying Governor Rafael Nantes, two security escorts and a pilot went down in a residential area in Lucena City just moments after taking off, said local police director Chief Inspector Bing Baasis.

All four aboard the aircraft and two people on the ground died were killed when the helicopter crashed into some houses, setting them on fire, said regional military spokesman Colonel Generoso Bolina.

Nantes, governor of Quezon province, was taking the chartered helicopter to a meeting in Manila about 100 kms away when the incident occurred, Rizza Salvana, an aide of the governor, told AFP.

The cause of the crash was still not known, police said.
The governor's chief aide, Francis Sevilla said in an interview with ABS-CBN television that the helicopter was brand new and that the governor had experienced no problems with it in all his previous flights.

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