A young British tourist was killed in a horrific accident that saw his body being chopped to pieces by helicopter blades, while his friends watched in shock at a Greek helipad. Jack Fenton, 22, a former student of a public school, was killed on Monday in Athens when was caught in the tragic accident after exiting an aircraft at a private airport along with three other tourists.
Fenton reportedly walked behind the Bell 407 helicopter while its engine was still on and was struck by the chopper's tail rotor, immediately chopping him to pieces, while others watched the horrifying scene. The pilot has been arrested on manslaughter charges and an investigation has been launched into the tragic incident.
Dead in No Time
The Brit traveler was getting off the plane at the private airport on Monday along with three other tourists, after his wealthy parents had booked their ticket from Mykonos to Athens. According to local media, Fenton, was taking a selfie when he was struck in the head by the high-speed rotor of the Bell 407 helicopter.
Fenton, an Oxford Brookes student, who went to the Â£36,000-a-year Sutton Valence boarding school in Maidstone, Kent, didn't realize that the helicopter's engines were still engaged and was severed from his body by the chopper's tail rotor while his horrified sibling looked on.
Athens-based Open TV reported that it is possible that the victim "was on a call or was trying to take a selfie when the accident happened."
Emergency services were sent to the private heliport on the outskirts of Athens following the mishap at approximately 6.20 p.m. local time, but Fenton is believed to have been killed instantly by the high-speed rotor.
The pilot who had landed and observed the horrible incident was forced to radio ahead to his colleague and inform him of what had happened as a second chopper carrying Fenton's parents was following closely behind.
The pilot of the second helicopter decided to deviate from the private airstrip in Spata and instead made an impromptu landing at Athens International Airport in a bid to prevent the man's parents from seeing the site of the fatal tragedy.
The pilot of the black Bell 407 aircraft and two ground crew members have reportedly been arrested while police conduct an investigation.
Four people, including Fenton were aboard the first helicopter, according to Greek media, and they were returning from Mykonos with plans to go to Athens International Airport and catch a flight to Britain.
A police source told The Sun: "We are talking about a tragedy - an unprecedented tragedy that never should have happened.
"The cause is being investigated but it remains unclear why this happened or was allowed to happen when rotor blades pose such an obvious danger."
Police said the propellers tend to continue for around two minutes after the engine has been switched off, unless the pilot presses a button to stop them at around 50 seconds.
Anyone who wants to can exit the chopper because it has no locks.Police, Independent Aviation Accident Investigation Authority, and Civil Aviation Service investigations are trying to determine if the pilot instructed the passengers to disembark.
Miguel Fenton, the father of Jack Fenton, oversees marketing, sales, and public relations at The Hop Farm, a 400-acre country park and tourist destination in Beltring, Kent, close to Tonbridge. Locals told The Sun that limousines were preparing to transport them to a private aircraft parked at Athens International Airport and were waiting at the Spata heliport.
Fenton's friends who are all in their twenties also gave statements before returning to the UK.
On Monday night, Greek police were spotted at the location conducting their investigation. It is thought that they are questioning the helicopter's landing pilot about why the passengers were permitted to leave the vehicle while the rotors were still spinning.
The probe, according to reports, will focus on how the passengers were let to exit the helicopter while the rotor blades were still turning.