Chopper Crash Lands on Beach

A helicopter made a forced landing south of Moonlight Beach in Encinitas Wednesday morning, sheriff's deputies said.

The pilots in the Robinson R22 were practicing an auto-rotation maneuver when they reported a problem with a tail rotor, Encinitas lifeguard Capt. Larry Giles said.  The tail of the chopper broke during the landing.

A surfer in the water said he heard some kind of engine shutoff.  The chopper rocked back and forth before making an emergency landing on the beach.

The helicopter landed about 5 feet away from the water line, news helicopter video showed.

The pilots had taken off this morning at Palomar Airport, lifeguards said.

No one was injured.
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