NTSB says report of helicopter crash could take a year to complete

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SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- National Transportation Safety Board spokesman, Luke Schiada, says it could take about a year for a final report to come out with the official cause of a deadly Sevier County helicopter crash. Schiada said a preliminary report will be available next week sometime.

On Monday evening, the helicopter from Smoky Mountain Helicopters was on a sight-seeing flight with four passengers on board. It crashed near Rainbow Road at 3:30 p.m. Schiada says it was on a flight that usually lasts about 12 minutes. It was the second flight of the day for the helicopter.

Officials do not believe a distress call was sent.

Crews are working to document as much of the crash scene as possible before the remnants of the helicopter are moved for further investigation. Schiada said the wreckage was consumed by flames and that will make the investigation more complicated.

Investigators are working to learn more about the pilot's history, including background and experience. They are also going to examine weather and radar data.