Two people died this Wednesday when a Bell 412 helicopter that was fighting the fires in Patagonia crashed in Aluminé, Neuquén, Argentina.
The aircraft was working on Block 39, fighting the fire in Quillén, which according to official estimates has already affected more than 6,000 hectares.
The victims, according to local media, are the pilot and a mechanic and the reasons why the helicopter could have crashed are still unknown.
The aircraft belonged to the Helicopteros del Pacífico company, which was hired to work as air support in the fire. It is a Chilean firm based in Buenos Aires.
The mayor of Aluminé, Gabriel Alamo, told Neuquén radio LU5 that the accident occurred around 11:00 on 29 December.
The Transportation Safety Board specified that the crashed aircraft is “a Bell 412 helicopter registration to be confirmed” and that the incident occurred “40 miles north of the Chapelco Aerodrome (Neuquén).”
The fire in Quillén broke out on December 16 after a lightning strike in a high mountain area and so far affected more than 6 thousand hectares.