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Paul McCartney Narrowly Avoided Helicopter Crash

Rocker's pilot was 'disoriented' in bad weather in May incident

November 12, 2012 2:10 PM ET
Sir Paul McCartney Nancy Shevell
Sir Paul McCartney and his wife Nancy Shevell.
Nick Harvey/WireImage

A helicopter carrying Paul McCartney and his wife Nancy Shevell came within feet of crashing earlier this year in England, the Mail on Sunday reports. The pilot of the Air Harrods charter craft reportedly became "disoriented" in bad weather while trying to land at night at McCartney's estate in East Sussex. The helicopter nearly crashed into trees before the pilot was able to lift away at the last second and land at a nearby airport. The helicopter's altimeter, which focuses on a fixed point to measure height, reportedly had a minimum reading of two feet, suggesting the fixed point was the trees and not the ground. The Department of Transport has begun an investigation, and the Air Accidents Investigation Branch has labeled the near-accident a "serious incident."

A spokesman for Air Harrods commented, "Harrods Aviation can confirm that an incident took place on May 3rd involving an Air Harrods helicopter. We are working in full cooperation with the AAIB which are currently investigating the incident."

McCartney and Shevell were reportedly unaware of how close they came to a fatal crash. "Paul has been spoken to. It has been put to him, everything. It’s a no comment," said a spokesman for McCartney.

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