Helicopter crashes into home, pilot rushed to the hospital

ODESSA, Fla. - A pilot was rushed to the hospital after his aircraft crashed onto the roof of a home in Odessa Monday evening.

According to officials, they received calls for help about the aircraft crashed onto the roof of a home sometime before 5:30 p.m.

The 51-year-old pilot, Bradley Bates, crashed less than 3 miles from his home on the 9400 block of Roberts Road in Odessa. The people, who live the home, were not there at the time of the crash. Their dog was, but the dog was okay and was not injured.

“I heard a sputtering noise and then a loud slam. It didn’t seem right,” Tim Peterson said.

Peterson lives right next door.

“I went out on the back porch and I was looking around and I didn’t see anything and I look straight back and you could see the tail hanging over the house and then smoke coming up,” Peterson said.

Authorities said the pilot was rushed to the hospital. The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office said he is in stable condition at St. Joseph’s hospital. 

“It might be a good thing that he hit the roof as opposed to the ground because there was some give,” Peterson said.

Neighbors said they see experimental helicopters flying around the area frequently.

“We do see some of those kind of aircraft flying around here that actually land on the lake, you know. Those guys with ultralights that fly around here,” David Hall said. 

Hall’s 11-year-old son saw the helicopter in the air before it crashed.

“It was low. It wasn’t looking good,” Sean Hall said.

Sean Hall knew something did not seem right.

“It wasn’t moving around like most helicopters were. It was kind of just sitting in place,” Sean Hall said. 

The cause of the crash is unknown at this time. Deputies said the NTSB and the FAA will be investigating. 

ABC Action News spoke with the homeowners and they said they did not want to comment about the crash. They are staying with family members. The sheriff’s office said the power to the home was turned off and Code Enforcement will inspect the home to figure out how much damage the home received.

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