Four dead in helicopter crash

Four people have died in a helicopter accident outside Ryd in Småland on Tuesday afternoon. Two military helicopters of the type known in Sweden as Helicopter 9 were involved in a mid-air collision.

The four who died were all serving officers belonging to the Helicopter Wing in Linköping but who were serving with Blekinge Wing, F 17, in Ronneby.

"It has been a black day for the Armed Forces with four of our colleagues and friends lost in the course of their duties. But above all it is a tragedy for their families and it is to them that we extend our heartfelt sympathy at this time," says Jan Andersson, Chief of Staff Swedish Air Force.

"We shall do everything we possibly can to support both their families and their close colleagues.

The Supreme Commander, Håkan Syrén, currently on an official visit abroad, said when news of the tragic event reached him:

"I should like to convey my deepest sympathy to the families concerned and to all who were close to those who lost their lives."