A Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper and a sheriff's office deputy died in a helicopter crash on Tuesday, officials said.
Tennessee Highway Patrol officials confirmed during a news conference that one of their troopers and a Marion County Sheriff's Office deputy had died in the crash in the area of Marion County, about 30 miles west of Chattanooga.
“Today is a very tragic day for law enforcement," an official said during part of the news conference, which was aired by WKRN News 2, an ABC affiliate based in Nashville.
The Federal Aviation Administration said a Bell 206 helicopter had struck a power line and crashed into a wooded area on Aetna Mountain near Whiteside, Tennessee, at around 4 p.m. It said only two people were onboard the aircraft.
It was unclear what caused the helicopter to strike the power line. The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the incident.
The Scott County Sheriff’s Office identified the trooper killed as Sergeant Lee Russell in a Facebook post. The Tennessee Highway Patrol did not immediately respond to a request for comment and NBC News was not immediately able to confirm the trooper’s identity.
"Our deepest condolences for our Tennessee Highway Patrol family and that of Sergeant Lee Russell, along with his passenger, a Marion County Sheriff’s Deputy, were both killed this afternoon in a terrible helicopter crash while serving the citizens of the State of Tennessee," the Scott County Sheriff's Office said in a post. "God bless these dedicated law enforcement officers and their families during this unimaginable time."