Saturday, July 4, 2015

Airbus Helicopter AS350B3e, Air Methods Corp., N390LG: Accident occurred July 03, 2015 in Frisco, Colorado

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

NTSB Identification: CEN15MA290 
Nonscheduled 14 CFR Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter
Accident occurred Friday, July 03, 2015 in Frisco, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/09/2017
Aircraft: AIRBUS HELICOPTERS INC AS350B3E, registration: N390LG
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Serious.

NTSB investigators traveled in support of this investigation and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The NTSB's full report is available at http://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/AccidentReports/Pages/AccidentReports.aspx. The Aircraft Accident Report number is NTSB/AAR-17/01.

On July 3, 2015, about 1339 mountain daylight time, an Airbus Helicopters AS350 B3e helicopter, N390LG, registered to and operated by Air Methods Corporation, lifted off from the Summit Medical Center Heliport, Frisco, Colorado, and then crashed into a parking lot; the impact point was located 360 feet southwest of the ground-based helipad. The pilot was fatally injured, and the two flight nurses were seriously injured. The helicopter was destroyed by impact forces and a postcrash fire. The flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135 on a company flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
Airbus Helicopters' dual-hydraulic AS350 B3e helicopter's (1) preflight hydraulic check, which depleted hydraulic pressure in the tail rotor hydraulic circuit, and (2) lack of salient alerting to the pilot that hydraulic pressure was not restored before takeoff. Such alerting might have cued the pilot to his failure to reset the yaw servo hydraulic switch to its correct position during the preflight hydraulic check, which resulted in a lack of hydraulic boost to the pedal controls, high pedal forces, and a subsequent loss of control after takeoff. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's failure to perform a hover check after liftoff, which would have alerted him to the pedal control anomaly at an altitude that could have allowed him to safely land the helicopter. Contributing to the severity of the injuries was the helicopter's fuel system, which was not crash resistant and facilitated a fuel-fed postcrash fire.


The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident. 

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration  AVP-100; Washington, District of Columbia 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Denver, Colorado
Airbus; Grand Prairie, Texas
Turbomeca; Grand Prairie, Texas
Air Methods Corporation; Denver, Colorado 
OPEIU - Local 109; Denver, Colorado 
BEA

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf 

Docket And Docket Items - National Transportation Safety Board:
https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

NTSB Identification: CEN15MA290
Nonscheduled 14 CFR Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter
Accident occurred Friday, July 03, 2015 in Frisco, CO
Aircraft: AIRBUS HELICOPTERS INC AS350B3E, registration: N390LG
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Serious.

NTSB investigators traveled in support of this investigation and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The NTSB's full report is available at http://www.ntsb.gov/investigations/AccidentReports/Pages/AccidentReports.aspx. The Aircraft Accident Report number is NTSB/AAR-17/01.

On July 3, 2015, about 1339 mountain daylight time, an Airbus Helicopters AS350 B3e helicopter, N390LG, registered to and operated by Air Methods Corporation, lifted off from the Summit Medical Center Heliport, Frisco, Colorado, and then crashed into a parking lot; the impact point was located 360 feet southwest of the ground-based helipad. The pilot was fatally injured, and the two flight nurses were seriously injured. The helicopter was destroyed by impact forces and a postcrash fire. The flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135 on a company flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident.


Dave Repsher, a flight nurse and paramedic, remains in critical condition after a fatal helicopter crash on July 3. 



While flight nurse and paramedic Dave Repsher remains in critical condition, a fund to help support his family was set up through Wells Fargo Bank on Tuesday.

Bank representatives said the Dave Repsher benefit donation fund, account #6703916434, was set up following several inquiries on a fund to help cover medical expenses and other costs.

Repsher was severely injured in a crash on July 3, when Flight For Life helicopter Lifeguard 2 fell to the ground shortly after takeoff. Pilot Patrick Mahany died shortly after the crash; flight nurse Matt Bowe is in fair condition and expected to make a full recovery. Bowe and Repsher were transported to St. Anthony Hospital and University Hospital in Denver immediately following the crash.

Weeks later, Repsher still remains in critical condition, according to Loralee Sturm, communications manager for St. Anthony Hospital in Lakewood.

“We’re all praying,” Sturm said.

“I know that he is hanging in there and continues to get treatment, which says a lot,” said Julie Kelble, a friend of the family. “There have been some ups and downs, but it’s a long process … It’s amazing that he’s made it this far.”

Repsher reportedly suffered severe burns following the crash, likely a result of the large fire that consumed the helicopter, an RV, a pickup truck and a camper in the parking lot west of St. Anthony Summit Medical Center.

His wife, Amanda, has spent many hours at the hospital, helping care for him since the accident.

“I’d like to thank our friends, family members, the Flight For Life team and all Dave’s caregivers for supporting us and helping us during this tragedy. Dave continues to fight for his life and remains in critical condition,” she said in a statement following the incident. “From serving on ski patrol and as a paramedic on ambulances, to caring for patients as an ICU nurse at St. Anthony Hospital and as a flight nurse for Flight For Life, Dave has dedicated his life to helping and caring for others. He has always put others first.”

Several funds have been set up to support the three families affected by the crash. A GoFundMe account was created by St. Anthony Summit Medical Center and will be split evenly between the families. So far it has raised just short of $74,000. Kelble added that a memorial may be placed on the land where the crash took place if county permission and the needed funds are gained.

Source:  http://www.summitdaily.com

AIR METHODS CORP:  http://registry.faa.gov/N390LG


NTSB Identification: CEN15FA290
Nonscheduled 14 CFR Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter
Accident occurred Friday, July 03, 2015 in Frisco, CO
Aircraft: AIRBUS HELICOPTERS INC AS350B3E, registration: N390LG
Injuries: 1 Fatal, 2 Serious.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On July 3, 2015, at 1339 mountain daylight time, an Airbus Helicopter Inc. (formerly American Eurocopter) AS350B3e helicopter, N390LG, impacted the upper west parking lot 360 feet southwest of the Summit Medical Center helipad (91CO), Frisco, Colorado. A post-impact fire ensued. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. The helicopter was registered to and operated by Air Methods Corp and the flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135 on a company flight plan. The airline transport pilot was fatally injured and two flight nurses were seriously injured. The public relations flight was en route to Gypsum, Colorado.

According to Air Methods the helicopter was flying to the American Spirit of Adventure Boy Scout Camp near Gypsum, Colorado, for a public relations mission. Multiple witnesses observed the helicopter lift off from the ground-based helipad, rotate counterclockwise, and climb simultaneously. One witness estimated that the helicopter reached an altitude of 100 feet before it started to descend. The helicopter continued to spin counterclockwise several times before it impacted a parking lot and an RV to the southwest of the Flight for Life hangar and helipad. The helicopter came to rest on its right side, was damaged by impact forces, and was charred, melted, and partially consumed by fire.

FAA  Flight Standards District Office:  FAA Denver FSDO-03






PATRICK EDWIN MAHANY, JR.

DEC. 8, 1950 - JULY 3, 2015

Patrick Edwin Mahany, Jr. was born on Dec. 8, 1950, in Hornell, New York. First-born son to Patrick Edwin Mahany, Sr. and Phyllis Isabelle Milliard, he was the eldest of five siblings: Timothy (deceased), Sean, Michelle and Kevin. Patrick is survived by wife Karen and three children, Kathleen Celeste, Shawna Suzanne and son Ryan Patrick. Patrick was a proud grandfather to Maxwell Allen, McKenzie Anne, Michael Ryan, Jackson Ryan, Grayson Sean, and great-grandfather to Matthew Allen.

Patrick grew up on the family’s potato farm in Arkport, New York. He worked on the farm with his father, coached his brother’s little league and competed in horse competitions with the family’s quarter horses and thoroughbreds. Patrick was known in and around Arkport as Patty and was also known for continuously getting into mischief with his brothers.

He graduated high school from Arkport Central School in 1968 where he played soccer and was named most valuable player. Patrick enjoyed his sports cars and rotated through many of them, including a Ford Falcon convertible and an MGB. He bought his first Corvette off the showroom floor after he returned from Vietnam in 1972.

Though he was much older than the younger ones, his siblings remember him as a loyal and loving brother who stood up to bullies and always brought fun, laughter and light to family gatherings. He had a zest for life and did all of his activities — whether it was hiking, skiing, water skiing, soccer, watching the Denver Broncos, and driving his sports cars —with passion and exuberance.

Knowing he would be drafted into the military, Patrick joined the Army in 1969 and graduated flight school in 1970. He served one tour in Vietnam from April 1970 to April 1971 where he flew 1,200 combat hours. He was shot down three times and earned a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart. Once he returned from combat, he was stationed in Fort Knox until getting out of the military in 1974 and then joined again in 1975 for three years. He once landed his helicopter on the farm in New York in exchange for 100 pound sack of potatoes for his commander. Always coming back home to visit his parents, Patrick is a member of the Arkport American Legion to this day.

After his military career, Patrick worked a variety of flying jobs including private and personal pilot, flew men and equipment to offshore oil rigs in Gulf of Mexico, fought fires in California and Arizona, long lines school in Washington in 1981, transported oil explorers and scientists in Alaska, the Forest Service in Moab, Utah, Life Flight for Rocky Mountain Helicopters in Florida. He joined Flight For Life in June 1987 until September 1998, took a short break and returned December 1999 to present. He was based out of St. Anthony’s North in Westminster from 1987 until moving to St. Anthony Summit Medical Center in Frisco, Colorado, in 2004. Patrick served as the base manager, the program safety officer and a member of the Hospital Safety Committee. He was instrumental in bringing night-vision goggles to the flight program and getting them approved by FAA to make night flying safer for himself and the crew. He knew that the safety of the crew ensured the safety of those they were transporting in the many critical situations they were asked to fly in.

Above all, Patrick served his crew members and colleagues in any capacity he could and fought hard for their voices to be heard and their needs to be met. He embodied the spirit of service to others, whether it be his crew and colleagues, whom he greatly loved, or the people he and his crew worked to save daily. At any given time, Patrick could be found watching weather reports and DTC updates for road conditions to be prepared for any critical situation. He was not only a skilled pilot from years of experience, but was also a trusted one with each crew member who had full confidence in his skill and abilities. Outside of work and hospital committee duties, Patrick was elected vice president of Local 109 Pilot’s Union and worked tirelessly to speak on behalf of the pilots and represent their needs to Air Methods.

He was also an active member of the Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association where he attended large and small gatherings of his combat brethren. Patrick was an extremely proud Veteran and was adamant for veterans’ rights and benefits. Patrick’s legacy of flying lives on with his son, Ryan, a Blackhawk pilot for the U.S. Army.

Patrick was an accomplished pilot with 45 years of flying experience and wisdom he humbly imparted — but only when asked. Ryan’s Army Aviation buddies saddled up to Patrick on a number of occasions, bourbon in hand, asking questions about his career. He imparted valuable wisdom to his son and his buddies by opening up his home and heart and, of course, taught them a few songs from Vietnam.

Patrick selflessly gave his love to his family and friends. People describe his presence when he entered a room, though they likely heard his booming voice first, and he always brought a vibrant and contagious joy that set everyone at ease. His gregarious and boisterous personality left an impression on everyone he met, even for a moment. His mustache was most memorable and distinguished, along with his ever present Flight For Life or Denver Broncos cap.

He was a beloved husband of 12 years to Karen Sue Tullberg Mahany. They fell deeply in love and married on June 22, 2003. They parented their four dogs and enjoyed taking them on daily hikes in the mountains of Summit County. They enjoyed traveling in the RV to Lake of the Ozarks or visiting family and getting out on the boat in the summer months. Above all, Patrick was a friend to many and hero to all. “No greater love hath a man, than to lay down his life for a friend.” John 15:13. Funeral Mass, Friday, 10 a.m., Dillon Amphitheater, Dillon. A reception to follow service at Copper Mountain Resort. In lieu of flowers, contributions are suggested to the Frisco Helicopter Donation Fund, c/o Wells Fargo Bank, P.O. Box 4340, Frisco CO 80443, acct. #6307517174 or the Patrick Mahany Memorial Fund via youcaring.com. Share condolences at http://www.horancares.com/Patrick-Edwin-Mahany-Jr..





Press conference following fatal Flight for Life crash near Frisco's St. Anthony Summit Medical Center. 
~



The pilot of a Flight for Life helicopter did not survive a crash involving three other vehicles on Friday next to Frisco’s St. Anthony Summit Medical Center.

Two other people were inside the aircraft at the time of the crash. The pilot, 64-year-old Patrick Mahany, was declared dead at the scene at 3:34 p.m. He had been a pilot for Flight for Life since 1987, and received a bronze star and a purple heart for his service as a pilot in the Vietnam War.

A flight paramedic and flight nurse were transported to Denver “with significant, but I believe, survivable injuries,” said Jodie Taylor, trauma medical director with St. Anthony Summit Medical Center, at a press conference on Friday evening. One was transported to St. Anthony Hospital in Lakewood, and the other was taken to University Hospital. Neither of their names were released at the conference.

“We are deeply saddened that our pilot was fatally injured, and our hearts go out to the pilot’s family,” Taylor said. She added that he had died by the time crews pulled him from the aircraft.

The helicopter was not responding to a medical emergency when it took off. Shortly after, it crashed in a nearby parking lot, colliding with an RV, a pickup truck and a camper, sparking a large fire.

“The whole ship was fully engulfed in flames,” Lake Dillon Fire spokesman Steve Lipsher said. “The helicopter was just taking off. It made some kind of awkward move and it fell back to the earth.”

Lake Dillon Fire battalion chief Shawn Sawyer said the fire was difficult to extinguish due to fuel leaking from the helicopter. A hazmat team responded as the fuel mixed with runoff from the water hoses.

“They had a tough time knocking it down,” Sawyer said.

The call came in around 1:40 p.m., and the fire was out within 15 minutes, with the combined aid of Lake Dillon Fire, Copper Mountain Fire and Red, White and Blue Fire.

Jason Bogner, of Omaha, was biking with his family nearby when they witnessed the crash. He said the helicopter appeared unsteady from the moment of takeoff.

“It immediately had issues. It was wobbly, unstable, and pitched one way. It became uncontrollable and crashed all within 20 seconds,” Bogner said. “The helicopter was sideways. It ran into an RV also, which was the reason the fire was so large.”

He said he saw three people exit the aircraft—one was able to exit unaided, while the other two were pulled from the helicopter. He said one was taken down to the bike path and carried by ambulance.

“One was much less injured than the other two. One had severe burns,” Bogner said.

Debris was scattered along the bike path below the hospital, with pieces of bent metal and shrapnel littered next to the path. Several waited outside of the hospital for news of friends who served with Flight for Life. Two stretchers were carried from the hospital, and a second Flight for Life may have transported patients to Denver.

“I’m an ex-nurse and I’ve never seen a hospital pull together that fast,” said Judy Day, who was waiting at the hospital for her brother who was being treated prior to the accident.

Taneil Ilano, spokeswoman with the Summit County Sheriff’s Office said the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board would conduct an investigation of the accident. “Our entire Summit County community is saddened today,” Ilano said. “Our hearts go out to the victims and their families.”

Story, photo gallery and video:  http://www.summitdaily.com


   
  






















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