Forced landing after fire in air
Two escape after helicopter crash
Two men had a "lucky escape" after their helicopter caught fire and crash landed in a remote field, fire officials said.
The pilot noticed fire had broken out in the engine shortly after he and a passenger took off in the two-seater pleasure helicopter. He was forced to carry out an emergency landing near Commons Wood Farm, near Northiam, East Sussex.
An East Sussex Fire and Rescue spokeswoman said that the tail rotor caught up in the ground after it crash landed, causing the aircraft to flip over.
She said: "The pilot and his passenger escaped the wreckage without suffering life threatening injuries. The pilot was taken to hospital for a check-up after sustaining burns to his right arm and hands as he kept hold of the controls during the landing."
Foam was used by fire crews to quickly extinguish the fire, the spokeswoman added.
Incident commander Mark Webb, of East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, said: "The two occupants had a lucky escape, not only because of the fire but because of the impact on landing."
A Sussex Police spokesman said the incident had been referred to the Air Accidents Investigation Bureau.
He said: "The aircraft had been airborne at the time of the initial engine fire, but the pilot managed to land without affecting local residents or utility services. Although very shaken, both the pilot and the passenger received fairly minor injuries."