MOSUL, Iraq (AP) – A U.S. Army reconnaissance helicopter went down in northern Mosul Friday and its two pilots were seriously injured after the aircraft came to the aid of Iraqi police under hostile fire, a U.S. Army officer and soldier said.
Both pilots of the OH-58 Kiowa, which is armed, were alive but unconscious when they were evacuated, U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Joel Burger, of the 172nd Stryker Brigade’s 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment, said at the scene of the crash. It was unclear why the helicopter went down at about 2:15 p.m. (1115 GMT).
“It looked like there was bleeding around the head area. They were not conscious. It’s not looking good. I’ve spent a lot of time in Iraq and these guy were pretty beat up,” Burger said.
The helicopter crashed in a what appeared to be a pile of rubbish near a group of mud huts in Mosul, 360 kilometers (225 miles) northwest of Baghdad. There was wreckage strewn over most of the crash site.
“It was responding to small arms fire being taken by Iraqi police. The gunmen fled to a nearby mosque,” said Maj. Richard Greene, executive officer of the 2-1.