Local and federal authorities are investigating the Southern California helicopter crash that claimed the lives of nine people — including 41-year-old NBA legend Kobe Bryant.The helicopter crashed into a hillside in Calabasas, California, Sunday morning, killing everyone on board.”It’s a logistical nightmare in a sense because the crash site itself is not easily accessible,” Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said in a news conference late Sunday, adding that the investigation could be a “very extensive process.”The effort to recover the victims’ bodies hasalso begun but could take a couple of days, Los Angeles County Chief Medical Examiner Jonathan Lucas said, “given the terrain and the condition of the site.”
“We’re doing everything we can to confirm identifications and give closure to the families involved.”Bryant was traveling to a basketball game with his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, who was scheduled to play Sunday afternoon. With them was Orange Coast College (OCC) baseball coach John Altobelli, his wife, Keri, and daughter, Alyssa, Altobelli’s brother told CNN. Alyssa was Gianna’s teammate, OCC assistant coach Ron La Ruffa told CNN.Altobelli would routinely travel with his daughter for games, La Ruffa said.”We have lost a member of our OCC family, and our hearts are broken,” OCC President Angelica Suarez said in a statement. “Coach Altobelli was a giant on our campus – a beloved teacher, coach, colleague and friend. This is a tremendous loss for our campus community.”Among the victims was also Christina Mauser, an assistant girls basketball coach for a private school in Corona del Mar, California.”My kids and I are devastated. We lost our beautiful wife and mom today in a helicopter crash,” her husband, Matt Mauser, wrote on Facebook.The sheriff’s office is working with the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration to determine the cause of the crash.
Foggy conditions morning of crash
The crash occurred under foggy and cloudy conditions with extremely low visibility, CNN meteorologist Michael Guy said.Weather conditions on Sunday morning didn’t meet the minimum standards for flying and the Los Angeles Police department grounded its helicopters, spokesman Josh Rubenstein told CNN.