According to a National Guard spokesperson, a Minnesota Army National Guard helicopter with three people aboard has been located after it went down during a flight from an Army aviation facility in St. Cloud, Minnesota.
The Black Hawk lost communication with the tower about 2:05 p.m. on Thursday while it was conducting a maintenance test flight, according to the Minnesota National Guard.
According to emergency radio calls, the helicopter called in a “mayday” about nine minutes after takeoff. Imagery from later in the afternoon showed what appeared to be wreckage from the Black Hawk just inside a tree line following an intense search effort.
The helicopter was missing for hours before the National Guard confirmed that it went down south of the Minnesota city of roughly 66,000.
“I can confirm the helicopter has been located after having gone down,” Master Sgt. Blair Heusdens, a spokesperson for the Minnesota National Guard confirmed to ABC News.
The Minnesota National Guard and local emergency services are currently trying to determine the location and status of the aircraft. The helicopter had three Minnesota National Guard personnel on board.
— MN National Guard (@MNNationalGuard) December 5, 2019
The status of the three Guardsmen who were aboard the UH-60 Black Hawk at the time it went down was unknown.
Aerial footage of the wreckage showed a twisted helicopter frame amid downed trees and snow-covered ground.
“The Minnesota Army National Guard is currently trying to work with local authorities in St. Cloud-based on its flight pattern,” Army Col. Joe Sharkey, director of communications for the Minnesota National Guard, told ABC News after the helicopter was reported missing.
Information about the helicopter’s flight destination was not immediately available, Sharkey said. A tweet from the Minnesota National Guard said the helicopter went down south of St. Cloud.