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9 killed as IAF choppers collide

Nine personnel of the Indian Air Force (IAF) died and one was injured when two MI-17 choppers of the Force collided mid air near Air Force Base in Jamnagar, Gujarat. Mahesh Langa reports.

india Updated: Aug 31, 2012 00:58 IST
Mahesh Langa

Nine personnel of the Indian Air Force (IAF) died and one was injured when two MI-17 choppers of the Force collided mid air near Air Force Base in Jamnagar, Gujarat.

The incident occurred outside the civilian area near Sarmat village, 16 km from Jamnagar city on Khambhalia highway.

Group Capt MG Mehta confirmed that a total of nine persons died in the accident, defense PRO in said in Ahmedabad. He said the incident happened around 12:30pm.

Those killed included four pilots and co-pilots and air warriors of the Air Force.

Sources said that a chopper touched the electric wires while flying and that might have resulted into fire.

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The choppers that collided were MI-17 of the Indian Air Force which were on training exercise. Nine were on board two choppers, which collided mid air and then crashed. PICTURES

Police and air force reached the crash site located in an open farm near Sarmat village as soon as was possible.

"We have reports that some persons have died in the accident. The entire area has now been cordoned off by the police, air force and civilian administration," Jamnagar district collector Sandeep Kumar told HT.

He refused to divulge more details saying the matter pertains to the Indian Air Force which can provide other details.

Indian Air force has a major base in Jamnagar, which is located in the Western coast.

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