US & Canada

Remote control helicopter kills teenager in NYC park

Image from ABC video of investigators standing near a remote controlled toy helicopter that apparently struck and killed a 19-year-old man 5 September 2013
Image caption The waterfront park near a busy motorway was often used by a local hobbyist club

A New York teenager has been killed when the toy remote control helicopter he was flying struck him in the head.

Roman Pirozek Jr, 19, was pronounced dead at a park in New York City's Brooklyn borough where hobbyists often fly remote control aircraft.

Police said reports suggested Pirozek was killed when the helicopter's blades struck his head and neck.

His death is thought to be only the second ever from a toy remote control helicopter in the US.

Police told the New York Daily News that Pirozek had apparently been attempting a stunt when something went wrong and the helicopter fell and hit him.

"The major vessels in his neck were involved and he just bled out very quickly," an emergency worker told the newspaper.

While police did not release the model of the helicopter Pirozek was flying at the time of the accident, an online video uploaded in July by someone with Pirozek's name showed an Align T-Rex 700N DFC flying at high speeds.

Rich Hanson, spokesman for the Academy of Model Aeronautics in Indiana told the Associated Press news agency that model was in the larger range of remote control helicopters and has a blade span of nearly 4.5ft (1.4m).

Mr Hanson said the teenager's death may have been only the second ever caused by a remote control helicopter in the US.

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