A preliminary report into a helicopter crash in Co Kildare which claimed the life of the pilot has found the helicopter descended in a "steep nose-down attitude" in the final moments of the flight.

Video footage obtained by the Investigation team showed the final one second of the flight in which the helicopter can be seen descending in a steep nose-down attitude.

The pilot, from Dublin, was killed.

The Robinson 44 helicopter, which was registered in the US, crashed at farmland in Kennycourt, about 6km southeast of Kilcullen, at 3.45pm on 11 December, 2022.

There were no other occupants.

Met Éireann provided the investigation team with as assessment of the weather conditions at the time of the crash, which showed the probability of freezing fog on the day was high.

In a preliminary report, a number of witnesses have told how they heard the helicopter "coming and going", "circling" and "moving around".

Some of the witnesses reported being able to see a "flashing light" or that the helicopter became low enough to briefly see its underside.

Others told the investigation team that they could not see and could only hear it.

One witness said that they thought that the helicopter was going to land, before it climbed 'nose straight up' and into cloud.

A number of witnesses reported seeing the helicopter descend steeply nose-first, prior to impact.

Some witnesses described hearing the sound of the engine running until an impact was heard.

The report said the helicopter was destroyed in the crash due to the impact and post-crash fire.

The helicopter pilot contacted Shannon Air Traffic Control reported at 2.32pm on 11 December to inform them he was leaving Ballygarrett, Co Wexford en route to Kilrush airfield in Co Kildare.

The four-seat, US-made Robinson R44 is the best-selling helicopter in the world and is popular among police agencies, flying club members and business travelers.

The Air Accident Investigation Unit say the investigation is continuing and final report will be published in due course.