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Pilot killed when crop-dusting helicopter crashes into Central California farm field


SALINAS, California — Authorities say a pilot was killed when a helicopter crashed while crop dusting a field in Central California.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer said the Bell 47 helicopter went down near Salinas Saturday morning.

The cause of the accident was under investigation.

The aircraft was registered to Gomes Farm Air Service, and the company said the pilot was co-owner Frank Gomes, Jr.

The company operates out of Salinas Municipal Airport.

The airport's manager, Brett Godown, told the Salinas Californian ( ) he saw workers maintaining the aircraft Saturday morning and called the Air Service "a very safe operation."

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