* U.S. helicopter crashes in rural England
* All crew thought to have been killed, say police
(Adds new Lakenheath and police statement, details)
LONDON Jan 7 Four crew on board a U.S. military
helicopter were feared dead after their aircraft crashed in
eastern England during a routine training operation on Tuesday,
police and U.S. officials said.
The helicopter, assigned to the 48th Fighter Wing based at
the nearby U.S. air base RAF Lakenheath, went down at about 1800
GMT on the north Norfolk coast, a rural area about 130 miles
(209 km) northeast of London.
"We can confirm that one of our HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopters
went down outside Cley during a low-level flying exercise," said
a spokesman at the U.S. base.
"The conditions of the four crew members are unknown at this
There was no immediate information as to the cause of the
Norfolk Police said in a statement there were believed to be
four fatalities, and a 400 metre (quarter mile) area had been
cordoned off while it was determined from the U.S. military what
munitions the helicopter was carrying at the time.
"The helicopter has been confirmed as a USAF Pave Hawk HH60
helicopter from RAF Lakenheath and four occupants are thought to
have died in the crash," the statement said. "Next of kin will
be informed before further details on the victims are released."
The RAF Lakenheath website said the primary mission of the
HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter was "to conduct day or night
operations into hostile environments to recover downed aircrew
or other isolated personnel during war."
Lakenheath is also home to Europe's only F-15 fighter wing,
and local media reported that F-15 planes had been flying over
the crash site.
In 2001, two single-seat F-15Cs from Lakenheath crashed
while on a low-flying training mission over Scotland, killing
(Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Mike Collett-White,
Andrew Hay and Ken Wills)