Report: Pilots warned about safety before East River chopper crash

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NEW YORK (AP) - Pilots for the company that operates the open-side helicopter flights like the one that crashed last month, killing five, had warned management repeatedly of safety concerns over equipment.

The New York Times reports the pilots had concerns about a range of things, from the types of harnesses used to strap passengers in to the tools they were given to cut the tethers in case of emergencies.

The company's CEO pushed back against the idea that the company didn't pay attention to the pilots' concerns and didn't respond to safety concerns.

Five people drowned in March when they were unable to free themselves from their harnesses after the helicopter rolled over into the water. The pilot, who was not wearing a harness, escaped with only minor injuries.

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