BANGKOK, Thailand Two media personnel have been identified as among the four casualties in Wednesday's crash involving a privately-owned helicopter in Khon Kaen province, northeast Thailand.
Channel 7 photographers Samnao Noisakul and Ronnakit Phetnin were onboard the ill-fated helicopter when it crashed and caught fire in the 9am (local time) incident, in the province's Wangsaeng village.
"Channel 7 had hired the helicopter for a news report and a TV programme. It was heading to Khon Kaen to pick up a reporter when it went down," Khon Kaen Airport director Anthaya Lapmark told local media, here.
According to Channel 7 reporter Natchapong Muhammad, he was waiting at Khon Kaen Airport for the helicopter to pick him up for a reporting duty about a storm in nearby Roi Et province.
Two other victims in the crash, which airport officials suspected was due to bad weather, were the pilot Seksana Wanna and his assistant Col Sinsamut Santhepa.
The ill-fated "AS355NP" helicopter operated by Heliluck Aviation Co took off from neighbouring Saraburi province before tragedy struck as it flew over Khon Kaen.
Rescuers retrieved all four badly burned bodies Wednesday night and send them to a nearby hospital for post mortems.
The victims' families and their next-of-kin have also been notified of the incident.
Source: NAM News Network