A Mexican Navy Mi-17 helicopter crashed into the Gulf of Santa Clara, Baja California, with 12 people on board on 20 October.
According to a statement released by the Ministry of the Navy, the Mi-17 helicopter went down on Saturday during the overland monitoring illegal fishing off the coast of Baja California.
By coincidence, witnesses filmed the moment the helicopter went down. Video footage of the crash shows the helicopter appears in a hover, rotates approx 360 degrees while losing altitude and impacts ocean nose down.
Most of the occupants were rescued by fishing boats and the Mexican Navy, who were already at sea. Two were transported to hospital in San Felipe for immediate medical attention.
The incident is under investigation, according to the release.
Mi-17 is a military transport variant in the Mi-8 family of helicopters. It is produced by Kazan Helicopters, a subsidiary of Russian Helicopters. The helicopter is designed for personnel transportation, and for carrying cargo internally or on the external sling. They can be used in search and rescue operations, and can also be equipped with weapons.
It is these helicopters’ universality and high flight capabilities that make them among the world’s most popular Russian-made helicopters.