'Aviation incident' sparks fire at townhouses near William & Mary

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. – A helicopter crash sparked a fire at the Bristol Commons Townhomes near the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg Sunday afternoon.

Virginia State Police said troopers responded to a 911 call about an aircraft crashing into a “residential structure” in the 1100 block of Settlement Drive just before 4:45 p.m.

Officials at the College of William & Mary said the crash happened near the Dillard Complex.

“The impact of the crash caused a fire within the townhouse structure,” troopers said.

Photos from Kaeley Clardy show firefighters batting a blaze at the building, reporter Todd Corillo said.

Chopper video from the area from after 6:30 p.m. showed most of the flames had been knocked down and firefighters working on the ground.

A witness told reporter Jake Burns he will never forgot the sound of the helicopter colliding with the side of this townhouse complex.

State police with help from Williamsburg Police were still assessing the scene to determine if anyone was injured as of 7:10 p.m.

“One resident told me he spoke to a man who was 10 feet away from where the aircraft struck,” Burns said. “That man was able to get to safety.”

That witness suspects authorities may have known the helicopter was in distress prior since crews arrived “30 seconds” after the crash. However, there was no official word f that is the case.

Troopers are working to determine what type of aircraft crashed into the building.

Officials said the FAA and NTSB are responding to the crash scene.

Stay with WTVR.com and watch CBS 6 News at 6:30 p.m. for updates on this breaking story. If you see breaking news, and can do so safely, shoot a photo or video and send it to CBS 6. You can also upload photos to our Facebook page or email pics@wtvr.com from your phone.


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