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Thread: Rescue helicopter crashes during hiker rescue on Baldy Peak, NM

  1. #1
    Senior Member Craig's Avatar
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    Rescue helicopter crashes during hiker rescue on Baldy Peak, NM

    This is still a developing story.
    Unfortunately, it appears some have not survived.
    Enjoy your best

  2. #2
    Senior Member ALGonquin Bob's Avatar
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    I saw the preliminary story yesterday. It's a tragedy that happens all too often, and is exactly the type of incident I thought about last month when the doctor told me I would need a helicopter transport out of the Grand Canyon clinic. My thoughts are with the families of that crew and passenger.
    "It's a beautiful day!" - The final words of fellow hiker Shin Murnane (5785W), near Marcy Dam 3/28/09.
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    Moderator David Metsky's Avatar
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    In my last first aid course they stressed that every course of action, including deciding to call for help, has risks to all parties involved. A sobering thought.
    You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself, any direction you choose. -- Dr. Seuss

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    Senior Member Craig's Avatar
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    I hope we get more detail on the circumstances that led to the 2 hikers getting separated and led to the crash.
    Hopefully with a survivor from both parties, they will be able to accurately piece it together.

    Now, if the media can only accurately report it…
    Enjoy your best

  5. #5
    Senior Member Barkingcat's Avatar
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    More information on what happened to Megumi Yamamoto, a University of New Mexico graduate student from Japan, who dialed 911 after getting lost in the Sangre de Cristo mountains and died when the rescue chopper crashed:

    http://tech.yahoo.com/news/ap/200906...crash911_calls

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    Banned Kevin Rooney's Avatar
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    I read that article, and apparently had she known to call 911 (she was a foreign national) there was a good chance 911 would have been able to use triangulation equipment to better locate her.

    So why didn't 911 call her? Wouldn't that have solved the triangulation problem, or does it work only on incoming calls? Am I missing something?

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    Senior Member sardog1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Metsky View Post
    In my last first aid course they stressed that every course of action, including deciding to call for help, has risks to all parties involved. A sobering thought.
    I knew a dog handler who died in a helicopter crash during a mission in the Olympics back in the late 90s. I've also been on the second helicopter in to an avalanche site at which the first helicopter rolled over while landing. No injuries from that one. And finally, the most experienced mountain helicopter pilot in Alaska, who had retired from the Alaska State Troopers after many years of flying SAR missions, etc., in extremely tough situations, crashed and died during a short flight across the water to Anchorage.

    Choppers are extremely useful and fun to ride on (most of the time), but as a pilot once told me, they have the glide pattern of a rock when things go wrong.
    sardog1

    "Å! kjære Bymann gakk ei stjur og stiv,
    men kom her up og kjenn eit annat Liv!
    kom hit, kom hit, og ver ei daud og lat!
    kom kjenn, hot d'er, som heiter Svevn og Mat,
    og Drykk og Tørste og det heile, som
    er Liv og Helse i ein Hovedsum."

    -- Aasmund O. Vinje, "Til Fjells!"

  8. #8
    Senior Member Craig's Avatar
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    I'm glad to see the media is still bird dog'n this one.

    I'm a little surprised the helicopter landed on the mountain. It was earlier reported she was found at 12,000'.
    Enjoy your best

  9. #9
    Senior Member DougPaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Rooney View Post
    I read that article, and apparently had she known to call 911 (she was a foreign national) there was a good chance 911 would have been able to use triangulation equipment to better locate her.
    My reading of the article suggests that she was calling 911. For some unknown reason, she was being routed to non-emergency operators. Her accent was also a problem.

    The E911 system is still relatively new. Looks like there are still some bugs at some installations.

    Doug

  10. #10
    Senior Member Craig's Avatar
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    Radio transmission in chopper crash released along with crash site video.

    The chopper pilot that was killed and the radio dispatcher were husband/wife.

    Quote Originally Posted by KOB.com, NM

    Sgt. Tingwall: Hey Leighann, can you hear me?
    Leighann Tingwall: Affirmative.
    Sgt. Tingwall: Alright. I struck a mountainside. Going down.
    Leighann: Are you 10-4?
    Sgt. Tingwall: Negative
    Officer: 77 Santa Fe where are they?
    Enjoy your best

  11. #11
    Senior Member TDawg's Avatar
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    Wow, this is horrible. Prayers to the families.

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    Senior Member ALGonquin Bob's Avatar
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    The article focused on the communication problem and mis-routed 911 calls, but despite all that the rescuer did find the hiker, so why all the stress on the phone calls and her accent? The only thing that matters here is that the helicopter went down, and many people lost loved ones in a tragic accident.
    "It's a beautiful day!" - The final words of fellow hiker Shin Murnane (5785W), near Marcy Dam 3/28/09.
    46er #5357W
    Check out ALGonquin Bob's Paddle Guide

  13. #13
    Senior Member DougPaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ALGonquin Bob View Post
    The article focused on the communication problem and mis-routed 911 calls, but despite all that the rescuer did find the hiker, so why all the stress on the phone calls and her accent? The only thing that matters here is that the helicopter went down, and many people lost loved ones in a tragic accident.
    The above problems appear to have delayed finding the victim.

    Possible effects:
    * Increased aircrew fatigue
    * One of the links suggests that the crash was near 9pm. Thus the delay could have converted a daylight rescue to a night rescue. (Much more dangerous for a helicopter.)

    Doug

  14. #14
    Senior Member Craig's Avatar
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    Additional information about the crash.

    Quote Originally Posted by www.santafenewmexican.com

    On Thursday, Hanes, who is also a member of an Albuquerque-based search and rescue team that was at the scene two days after the initial crash, pointed to a small pine tree near the top of the boulder-strewn slope and said that was the highest point where wreckage was found. That item was a piece of equipment from the helicopter that Hanes said fell out or was thrown out of the aircraft. Police have said the helicopter might have struck a tree with its tail rotor, causing it to crash.
    Enjoy your best

  15. #15
    Senior Member Craig's Avatar
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    It seems there is some Monday morning quarterbacking with regards to SAR's protocol in this incident.

    Article

    Article
    Enjoy your best

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