Kallie Meno was excited when she first saw the helicopter that looked like it was trying to land as she was stopped at a red light on Broad Street Tuesday morning.
“I thought, ‘this is so cool! I’ve never seen a helicopter land this close,'” said Meno, 27, who lives in Seattle’s Wedgwood neighborhood.
But that excitement turned to confusion, then horror as she watched the helicopter weave and get closer to the ground. It looked as if it had lost control, Meno said, like something seen only in video games and bad movies. She looked over her left shoulder and saw the helicopter crash only a few car-lengths away.
Worried that her car was going to explode as debris hit the back of it, she opened the door and ran.
“I knew there was a terrible crash, so I opened the door and bolted,” she said. “There was this terrible sound of the crunch of metal and steel. I thought I had been hit. That’s how loud it was.”
She went back to get her car and drove to the World Trade Center East building on Elliott Avenue, where she works, then headed back to the scene and spoke with police officers. A National Transportation Safety Board official took photos of the back of her car, which she bought two weeks ago.
She wasn’t even supposed to be downtown this morning, she said. She had scheduled a dentist appointment, and then canceled it because she wanted to be with her company when they made a big announcement this morning. She was excited to get to work.
She said she can’t get the sound of the metal crunch out of her head.
“It was so loud,” Meno said. “Even just watching it weave back and forth, and then it come down, it didn’t seem real.”