More details are becoming clear surrounding the death of Kobe Bryant and the crash that claimed his life alongside 8 others, including his daughter Gianna. The NTSB has released a series of details throughout the day Friday on their discoveries surrounding the crash, noting that the engine of the chopper did not fail and an eyewitness saw the aircraft exit the clouds very close to a nearby bike trail.
Now the organization has released photos of the helicopter flying in cloudy conditions, capturing the craft only moments before the deadly crash.
While weather is one of the leading theories surrounding the crash, officials have yet to determine the official cause of the crash from the morning of Jan. 26.
NTSB releases photo of Kobe Bryant helicopter flying into cloud before crash and other images https://t.co/IsbBTdoZd7— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) February 8, 2020
Witnesses in the Calabassas area were asked to provide images of the conditions at the time of the crash and details into what was seen before the deadly accident.
The report also included several witness photographs from the scene, capturing the flames from the wreckage and the aftermath once fire and rescue officials arrived to the scene.
The NTSB report photos "depict fog and low clouds obscuring the hilltops," according to the report. As had been previously reported, the helicopter involved in the accident had not been certified to fly in low visibility. Many had commented that this was not unusual in California but the accident may change that.
Island Express Helicopters, the company who owned the helicopter involved in the accident, suspended their operations shortly after the crash.
Kobe Bryant's helicopter engine did not fail according to preliminary reports by the National Transportation Safety Board. The final report will not be released until close to a year after the crash. pic.twitter.com/HQL4DbpUeY— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) February 8, 2020
"The shock of the accident affected all staff, and management decided that service would be suspended until such time as it was deemed appropriate for staff and customers," a statement from the company read.
The full report is available on the NTSB website here and lays out what has been discovered to this point. Wreckage from the engine does indicate there was no failure within. Sadly, the helicopter did not have a "black box" recorder, so investigators are forced to use wreckage to determine the final cause.