6 Dead in Helicopter Crash Heading to Nevada Before Super Bowl

(RepublicanNews.org) – Two days before Super Bowl Sunday, six people died after their helicopter tumbled from the sky in California while heading to the major sporting event in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The crash happened near Baker, California, around 10:00 pm on Friday, February 9th, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff. All six passengers onboard perished in the tragic accident. Witnesses reportedly saw a fire erupt from the helicopter after it hit the desert terrain near Interstate 15 and not far from Halloran Springs, California.

Nigerian President Bold Ahmed Tinbu confirmed that the victims included Access Holdings CEO Herbert Wigwe, as well as his wife, Chizoba, and Chizi, their son. Among the victims was also Abimbola Ogunbanjo, once a chairman of the Nigerian Exchange Group, and two pilots. Tinbu said their deaths are “an overwhelming tragedy” and “shocking beyond comprehension,” and that he prays for a “peaceful repose” for the dead.

According to National Transportation Safety Board member Michael Graham, the helicopter took off around 8:45 PM before crashing just over an hour later. The aircraft was an Airbus EC130 rented from Orbic Air, a tour company based in Burbank. During a news conference on Saturday, February 10th, Graham also said that the weather was a mixture of rainy and “wintery” during the accident and that officials were gathering evidence and investigating the incident.

In a few weeks, officials are expected to release a preliminary report, although a complete investigation could take a couple of years. An investigation will also be conducted by the Federal Aviation Administration.

The flight was on its way to Super Bowl LVIII, which took place two days later. More than 1,000 private aircraft flew into Nevada to attend the massive sporting event at Allegiant Stadium to watch the San Francisco 49ers face off with the Kansas City Chiefs, who claimed a narrow victory. The game turned out to be the longest Super Bowl ever and the seventh-longest game in NFL history.

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