Police say all 9 people on board a helicopter that crashed in snow-covered mountains of central Japan have died. The group was conducting a drill for rescuing climbers.
Police, firefighters and Japanese Self-Defence Force personnel found the men in and around the mangled aircraft around 8 AM on Monday.
The helicopter crashed shortly after 3 PM on Sunday on Mount Hachibuse, Nagano Prefecture. The aircraft is owned by the prefecture’s government and was on a training flight for rescuing climbers.
Police have identified 5 of the victims. They include the pilot and firefighters with the prefecture’s Fire and Disaster Management and Aviation Center. Police have yet to identify the other 4.
Local officials say they conducted a regular inspection on the Bell 412 EP helicopter in February and found no abnormalities.