Helicopter crash victims identified

STONY RIDGE — Federal investigators will try to determine what caused the fatal crash of a helicopter used for inspecting power lines.

Both men aboard died Monday. FirstEnergy said they were contractors doing transmission line inspection work in northwest Ohio.

The Wood County sheriff’s office identified the pilot as Tyson Snyder, 32, of Wooster, and his passenger as Jeffrey Fluharty, 62, of Fairmont, W.Va.

A 911 caller reported at 11:41 a.m. the helicopter went down suddenly, into a snowy farm field in the crash Monday just south of the Ohio Turnpike. Both men were dead at the scene.

Sheriff Mark Wasylyshyn said there was no sign of fire and no indication that the aircraft hit utility lines.

Authorities said the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate.

“They will take it into a building somewhere and completely dissect it and try to find out if it was human error or mechanical failure,” Wasylyshyn told WTOL. “But it will be many months before we know the actual cause of the crash.”