Three victims of Grand Canyon crash were British

Three Britons have been identified as victims in a helicopter accident at the Grand Canyon in Arizona, the Foreign Office says.

Six passengers and a pilot were on board the Papillon tour helicopter when it came down in the Grand Canyon West area at about 5.20pm on Saturday.

The four survivors – all in critical condition – were treated at the scene before being flown to a hospital in Las Vegas. Details of their nationalities have not been released.

A Foreign Office spokeswoman said: “We are providing support to the families of six British visitors involved in a helicopter accident at the Grand Canyon on February 10, and we are in close contact with the US emergency services.”

Photos of the crash scene showed flames and dark smoke rising from the rocky terrain.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer said the Eurocopter EC130 aircraft sustained considerable damage.

The FAA and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the crash.

Papillon Airways says on its website that it is “the world’s largest aerial sightseeing company” and that it provides “the only way to tour the Grand Canyon”.

The cause of the helicopter crash is being investigated

Image: The cause of the helicopter crash is being investigated

The company says it flies around 600,000 passengers a year over the Grand Canyon and on other tours.

It also says it “abides by flight safety rules and regulations that substantially exceed the regulations required by the Federal Aviation Administration”.

A Papillon helicopter was previously involved in a fatal Grand Canyon crash in 2001.

More from Arizona

The pilot and five tourists from New York were killed, while one woman survived.

More follows…