Skip to comments.CA: 3 dead, 3 injured in SoCal chopper crash ( Catalina Island Tour Chopper )
Posted on 05/24/2008 12:38:59 PM PDT by Ernest_at_the_Beach
OS ANGELES (AP) - A tour helicopter crashed in rainy weather on an island off the Southern California coast Saturday morning, killing three people and injuring three others, a county sheriff's deputy said.
The helicopter went down on the west end of Santa Catalina Island near Two Harbors, causing a small fire that was quickly doused, authorities said. Helicopters airlifted the three injured to mainland hospitals.
County Supervising Fire Dispatcher Melanie Flores said their condition at the time of transport was critical and that they would require treatment for broken bones among other injuries.
The chopper was a private tour aircraft from Island Express, Deputy Chuck Upton said.
Federal Aviation Administration records show the helicopter departed from Long Beach and was scheduled to return to that city. The cause of the crash was not immediately known.
The island is 26 miles west of the California shore, near Los Angeles.
The crash occurred near the Banning House lodge, which overlooks a popular boating spot. A woman who answered the phone at the lodge confirmed reports that the chopper's engine appeared to quit, crashing about 200 to 300 yards inland in grass. The owner of Island Express had gone to the scene of the crash, said a woman who answered the company's telephone. She declined to give her name and other details.
An Island Express sightseeing chopper made a hard landing on the island in 1999, slightly injuring six tourists.
The company provides charters and tours to the island and other Southern California destinations, according to the company's Web site. The company also does movie and television work and services off-shore oil platforms.
God be with the families of those injured and killed.
Whether it's mechanical problems or it's pilot error, the chances of dying are very high in an avation accident. In a car, if you're properly restrained, and you are not driving wrecklessly, your chances of surving are pretty high
I hate helicopters.
I just did a google search on this tragedy and saw that it was posted up here and wanted to chime in...
A few hours ago I found out that a friend of mine was one of the individuals who lost their lives in the crash Saturday morning...
I spent the evening with a bunch of friends who all knew Johnny and I am still in a state of shock and disbelief that I will never see my friend again. He was in his 20’s and had worked for the helicopter tour company since I met him about 2 years ago. He wasn’t a pilot, but aspired to become one in time....
Please pray for Johnny, the other victims, and their families.
...i’m having a really hard time right now. I really don’t know what else to say...
It seems that the engine had a flame-out and failed, causing the helicopter to crash...
Sorry to hear about your loss.
I have a friend in Arizona who experienced something similiar. He had a friend who was a nurse on a Lifeflight helicopter that went down....and a day later, received in the mail some home baked cookies she had made and sent the day before. He had trouble sleeping for a while.
Prayers, Andrew....for all of you. I’m sorry to hear of your loss.