Geese May Be To Blame In Deadly Helicopter Crash, NTSB Says

The January helicopter crash that killed three first-responders in Hydro may have been the result of geese, according to a preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board.

Friday, February 2nd 2024, 5:21 pm

By: News 9


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The January helicopter crash that killed three first-responders in Hydro may have been the result of geese, according to a preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board.

Three people were killed in an Air Evac helicopter crash on Jan. 20, the Air Evac Lifeteam confirms. Pilot Russell Haslam, Flight Nurse Adam Tebben and Flight Paramedic Steven Fitzgerald were died in the crash, according to the Air Evac Lifeteam.

Related Story: Weatherford Community Reacts To Deaths Of Helicopter Medical Crew

The crash occurred late Jan. 20, after 11 p.m., after the control center lost contact with the aircraft, Air Evac Lifeteam said. The crew was based out of Weatherford, and they were returning to base after transporting a patient to Oklahoma City, according to the Air Evac Lifeteam.

According to the NTSB report:

"The carcasses of several geese were located in the debris field as well as one embedded in a flight control servo. Samples of the geese feathers were recovered for more detailed identification."

The report noted that the U.S. Air Force's Avian Hazard Advisory System didn't find much of a likelihood of "bird activity" in the area.

The Air Evac Lifeteam's full statement can be read below:

"Air Evac Lifeteam deeply appreciates the support they have received from the community and our partners in care during this challenging time. It is with a heavy heart that we share the names of our three colleagues lost in the tragic January 20 air accident. Pilot Russell Haslam, Flight Nurse Adam Tebben and Flight Paramedic Steven Fitzgerald. We continue to hold their families in our hearts."


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