Ramona Airport reopens after helicopter crash

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RAMONA, Calif. - By Thursday afternoon, crews had moved the wreckage from a UH-60 Blackhawk that went down at the Ramona Airport Monday evening.

The airport had been closed since the hard landing Monday, but re-opened for air traffic around 5 p.m.

The damaged California National Guard aircraft was loaded onto a flatbed truck and will head to Los Alamitos Join Training Base, about 2 hours away from Ramona.

It will remain there for the duration of a military investigation, which could take up to six months.

Prior to the heliopter's removal, many nearby residents stopped by the airport to catch a glimpse of the massive chopper.

Ramona resident Carlos Ravelo said he stopped by the crash site daily.

"I figured 'hey, they probably haven't had a chance to [remove] it yet and bring it back to its original position', but today I drove by again and here I am, come to find out its still here," Ravelo said.

A chopper like the one that crashed Monday typically weighs more than 10,000 pounds empty. When loaded, it can weigh more than 22,000 pounds.

An Army National Guard public affairs offer said both pilots involved in the crash were released from the hospital and are recovering comfortably.

The names of the pilots, who have not yet returned to work, have not yet been released.

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