N1 Posted November 8, 2007 Report Share Posted November 8, 2007 Regis#: CGNSR Make/Model: A119 Description: A-119 Koala Date: 11/06/2007 Time: 1845 Event Type: Accident Highest Injury: None Mid Air: N Missing: N Damage: Substantial LOCATION City: CODY State: WY Country: US DESCRIPTION C-GNSR, A CANADIAN REGISTERED AGUSTA A119 ROTORCRAFT, CRASHED DURING ATTEMPT TO LAND ON A MOUNTAIN SLOPE, 40 MILES WEST OF CODY, WY INJURY DATA Total Fatal: 0 # Crew: 4 Fat: 0 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk: 1 # Pass: 0 Fat: 0 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk: # Grnd: Fat: 0 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk: WEATHER: NOT REPORTED OTHER DATA Activity: Unknown Phase: Landing Operation: OTHER FAA FSDO: CASPER, WY (NM04) Entry date: 11/07/2007 Sheriff: Helicopter crashed as pilot attempted landing By LORNA Of The Gazette Staff A helicopter that crashed Tuesday in the Washakie Wilderness area west of Cody, Wyo., was apparently trying to land on an 11,900-foot mountain plateau so the four people aboard the high-end machine could stretch their legs and take a potty break. That's what pilot Adam Walsh, 33, of Newfoundland, Canada, told him, said Park County Sheriff Scott A. Steward on Wednesday. No one aboard - Walsh; Jennifer Gulliver, 40; Chris Verbiski, 39; and a 6-month-old infant, all from Newfoundland - was seriously hurt. Walsh was transported by Air Idaho to West Park Hospital and was treated for back injuries and released. No calls - Steward said he gave members of the party his telephone number and asked them to call on Wednesday. At 2 p.m. Wednesday, he hadn't heard from them and said he didn't know where they were. The helicopter was on its way from Helena to a fueling stop in Riverton, Wyo., Steward said. From there, the party had expected to travel to Colorado Springs, Colo. He did not know if that was their final destination. The sheriff said that the helicopter remains on Ptarmigan Peak, on Forest Service land, in a wilderness area and will have to be removed. Aircraft are not allowed to land in wilderness areas without a permit except in emergencies. Terry Root, District Ranger of the northern zone of the Shoshone National Forest, said federal law enforcement officials may investigate if there is some question about whether the pilot was making a nonemergency landing when the crash occurred. "The Forest Service doesn't investigate crashes, but if it was an intentional landing that went bad, that is a law enforcement matter," he said. Forest Service employees will be looking at the crash on a number of fronts, including whether there is a fuel spill involved, he said. "That will happen very quickly," he said. Combing the scene - Steward said the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration have been notified of the crash and will have to clear the helicopter for removal after their investigations are complete. The sheriff said the helicopter, a 2001 Augusta, is registered to Coordinates Capital Corp., owned by Verbiski, in St. Johns, Newfoundland. The helicopter's insurance carrier has been notified and will likely be responsible for its salvage, he said. Walsh told sheriff's deputies that the aircraft appeared to lose power as he attempted to land. Winds on the peak were about 30 mph at the time of the crash. The sheriff said the rocky plateau high above the tree line had been cleared of snow by the wind. Park County was alerted to the crash at 2:25 p.m. and Park County Search and Rescue was mobilized immediately, Steward said. The sheriff's office launched its plane with a pilot and a deputy to find what they believed at the time was a downed airplane. At 3:16 p.m., the sheriff's plane received an Emergency Locator Transmitter signal and advised Air Idaho. The helicopter was spotted at 3:30 p.m., and the sheriff's plane made a low pass to drop a radio to the crash victims. Once radio contact was established, the sheriff's officers learned that all four aboard had survived the crash. The sheriff's plane stayed in the area to direct rescue aircraft to the site. Air Idaho arrived at the scene at 4:18 p.m., followed quickly by a helicopter from Worland with Park County Search and Rescue members and emergency medical technicians from West Park Hospital. The sheriff said a U.S. Army Blackhawk medevac helicopter from Montana also landed at the site. It was sent after the U.S. military rescue center based in Langley, Va., had been notified by the pilot by satellite telephone. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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