A “white” teenage remote-control helicopter enthusiast flying one in a park on Thursday was struck in the head by it and killed.
Roman Pirozek Jr., 19, was pronounced dead at a Brooklyn park near a busy parkway, and initial reports suggested he was killed by the helicopter’s blade, according to cops.
The accident occurred in Calvert Vaux Park, where operating remote-control helicopters is allowed in designated areas. A club for hobbyists, the Seaview Rotary Wings Helicopter Club, flies its aircraft from a field there.
Pirozek’s father, Roman Pirozek, is a vice-president of the club. He and other club members didn’t return messages seeking comment Thursday.
Investigators said they didn’t suspect any criminal act was involved in the teenager’s death. They didn’t immediately release the model and make of the helicopter he was flying.
In a YouTube video posted in July by someone named Roman Pirozek Jr., a T-Rex 700N DFC is shown flying around at high speeds in lateral and vertical jolts.
That particular make is on the larger side of remote-control helicopters, said Rich Hanson, spokesman for the Muncie, Ind.-based Academy of Model Aeronautics, a membership group of hobbyists.
Hanson said the helicopter has an almost 4 1/2-foot wingspan and can reach speeds of up to 96 km/h but is used primarily for tricky, acrobatic manoeuvres.
“Flying a RC helicopter is one of the more difficult aircraft to operate,” he said. “There are really two common reasons one might go out: pilot error or equipment failure.”
Pirozek’s death, Hanson said, likely is only the second ever caused by a remote-control helicopter in the United States. He said some years ago an instructor in Texas was killed by a remote-control helicopter after the student he was teaching lost control of it.
Good riddance! R.I.P. (Rot In Piss) you filthy honk!