Neighbor: Medical helicopter sounded like a 'freight train' - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Neighbor: Medical helicopter sounded like a 'freight train'

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SOMERVILLE, TN -

(WMC-TV) - Neighbors are processing the news of a medical helicopter crash near their small town of Somerville, Tennessee Tuesday morning.

It was around 6:30 a.m. when Sherri Morris heard what she described as a freight train in the sky.

"And thought, 'My word, what is that?' And I went out and noticed it was a helicopter," she explained.

Morris was walking her dog when the chopper flew over her house.

"I just feel like he must have known he was in trouble and he was trying to avoid residential areas," she recalled.

Shortly after seeing the helicopter, Morris began hearing reports that it had crashed just miles away.

The Eurocopter Astar aircraft was purchased brand new by Hospital Wing. The medical helicopters are designed to fly at a maximum speed of 178 miles per hour.

Investigators are not sure whether speed, mechanical failure, or something else caused the crash.

"I could tell it was flying low and it was still cloudy and I guess it was because of the clouds and it just didn't sound right," said Morris.

"I just want to know why it went down," said John Tosh, who lives nearby. "There are two ways it could go down, mechanical error or pilot error. I like to think it's not pilot error."

Emergency crews had a hard time getting to the scene of the crash because of the terrain.

"Four wheelers and all terrain are about the only thing that can get you back there," said neighbor Joann Tosh. "They're very specialized in their work and dedicated and its such a shame to see this happen because they were rescuing someone else and instead gave their own lives."

Neighbors say there is only one thing they can do as investigators work to determine what caused the crash.

"I can only pray and hope they get through it," said Joann.

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.
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