Seattle station ID's 2 killed in helicopter crash 

click to enlarge A burned out car sits adjacent to a piece of wreckage of a news helicopter Tuesday, March 18, 2014, in Seattle. The KOMO-TV helicopter helicopter crashed into a city street near Seattle's Space Needle on Tuesday, killing two people, critically injuring a person in a car on the ground and sending plumes of black smoke over the city during the morning rush hour. - AP PHOTO/ELAINE THOMPSON
  • AP Photo/Elaine Thompson
  • A burned out car sits adjacent to a piece of wreckage of a news helicopter Tuesday, March 18, 2014, in Seattle. The KOMO-TV helicopter helicopter crashed into a city street near Seattle's Space Needle on Tuesday, killing two people, critically injuring a person in a car on the ground and sending plumes of black smoke over the city during the morning rush hour.

A Seattle TV station has identified the two people killed in a news helicopter crash near the Space Needle.

The fiery wreck happened Tuesday morning as the KOMO-TV helicopter took off from the station. The chopper went down on Broad Street and hit three vehicles, starting them on fire and spewing burning fuel down the street.

The fire department says a 38-year-old man in one of the vehicles was taken to Harborview Medical Center in critical condition.

Hospital spokeswoman Susan Gregg says the man suffered burns on up to 20 percent of his body and likely will require surgery.

KOMO said on the air that the pilot of the helicopter was Gary Pfitzner. The other man killed was Bill Strothman, a former longtime KOMO photographer who was working for the helicopter leasing company.

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