1 dead, 4 injured in Bahamas helicopter crash

Published On: Nov 22 2012 06:37:28 PM EST
Updated On: Nov 23 2012 08:51:32 AM EST
NASSAU, Bahamas -

A helicopter crashed early Thursday in an upscale Bahamas resort community, killing one U.S. citizen and injuring four others, police reported.

Abaco Police Superintendent Noel Curry said all five passengers were Americans, but he could not confirm the identities or genders of the dead person or the four survivors. He also said he could not immediately comment on the extent of the survivors' injuries.

One of the survivors is identified as Jeffrey Soffer, principal of Florida-based real estate developer Turnberry Associates.

Renardo Curry, Parliament member for North Abaco, said the helicopter was attempting to land at the exclusive Baker's Bay Golf & Ocean Club on Great Guana Cay when a wind gust sent the aircraft spiraling.

An employee of the resort community told The Associated Press that he helped residents pull people out of the wreckage. He described the crash as a "nightmare."

"They got into an air pocket and it went into a tailspin. It recovered, and then it went into a tailspin again and from there it hit the ground. The tail came off and the cabin just went into a spin and somebody got thrown out," said the Baker's Bay employee, who insisted on not being quoted by name because he wasn't authorized to speak with journalists.

Baker's Bay is a playground for millionaires located about 150 miles off Florida's eastern coast. It includes an oceanfront golf course, a private family beach club and boutique shops.

There were roughly 180 people on the island property for Thanksgiving festivities, the resort employee said.

"Everyone who was there in one way or another helped out," said Curry, the police superintendent.

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