A WCVB-TV (Channel 5) news helicopter made an emergency landing late this afternoon on the Boston Common.
The red helicopter with "Sky5" written on it could be seen apparently undamaged on a bed of icy snow on the Common near Beacon and Charles streets shortly after 6 p.m.
The station described the landing in a news report as a "hard landing" and said there were no injuries to the pilot or passenger. The Boston Fire Department said it was called to the scene at 6:02 p.m. and no injuries were reported.
Swarms of police and firefighters surrounded the scene, which was at Beacon and Charles streets, shortly after the incident. A small crowd of spectators has also gathered to see what was going on.
Thomas Golden, 21, of Pembroke was driving the Zamboni machine at the Frog Pond skating rink when, he said, he saw the lights of the helicopter come over a building on Tremont Street. He said the craft flew around the Common, on the Boylston Street side, and then over to the area near Beacon and Charles, which is one of the few areas where there are no trees and few people.
"It maybe took 15 seconds to get down a thousand feet," he said. "He was wicked low, wicked fast."
"He went down hard. I thought he crashed," he said. "Props to that pilot. That was incredible."
He said there was no engine noise from the helicopter shortly before the landing.
"My co-workers thought I was lying. It was quiet. No one else heard it," he said.
He said he and several other Frog Pond workers ran over to the scene to see what happened. They were told by a park ranger that the pilot and passenger were OK.
A spokeswoman for the TV station didn't immediately return a message seeking comment.
Martin Finucane of the Globe staff contributed to this report.
On the beat
Columnist Shirley Leung says Boston mayor-elect Martin J. Walsh should focus on middle-class housing. Read more