WASHINGTON – One crew member died and two were injured when a Black Hawk helicopter crashed on a St. Mary’s County golf course during a training exercise Monday afternoon.
A Fort Belvoir UH-60 Blackhawk was conducting a routine training flight when it crashed in the area near Breton Bay Golf and Country Club in Leonardtown, Maryland, around 1:30 p.m., the U.S. Army Military District of Washington said in a statement Monday evening.
All three crew members on board were medically evacuated from the scene, and one of the crew members later died, the Army said.
The crew members’ names have not yet been released.
A military investigation into the cause of the crash will begin at the site Tuesday.
“We are deeply saddened by this loss within our community,” Maj. Gen. Bradley A. Becker, commanding general, Joint Force Headquarters National Capital Region and the U.S. Army Military District of Washington said in the statement. “Our condolences go out to the families and friends affected by this tragedy, and our team is focused on supporting them during this difficult time.”
St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office asked people to avoid the Society Hill area of Leonardtown while the investigation is underway.
Kevin Bowen, who works in the pro shop of the Breton Bay Golf and Country Club, says he saw the helicopter before it went down between the third and fourth holes of the golf course.
“I was just in the club house and I saw him flying pretty low over the trees, and then I just looked out again, he was spinning around and then he went down,” Bowen said.
People on the golf course ran over to help following the crash, he said.
“Two or three pedestrians just started running towards hole 3, they just started running that way I guess to try to go help,” he said.
Bowen said he didn’t see smoke coming from the helicopter before it made the hard landing.
“Its crazy, I can’t believe, I thought I was coming to work today and everything was going to be a nice peaceful day,” he said.
Below is a map with the location near the downed aircraft:
Less than two weeks ago, a National Guard fighter jet experienced mechanical problems just a few minutes after taking off from Joint Base Andrews and crashed in Prince George’s County. The pilot was the only person on the jet and had minor injuries.
WTOP’s Mike Murillo contributed to this report.
Stay with WTOP.com for updates on this developing story.