Twenty-nine-year-old Chana Daskal, the sole survivor of an Aug. 10, 2001 Papillon Grand Canyon Helicopters crash, will receive $38 million under a settlement. Besides losing her husband in the accident, Daskal suffered severe burns and had both legs amputated.
A pilot has pleaded not guilty to manslaughter charges, following an accident in Hawaii last September that killed three passengers. Glen Lampton was flying a Heli USA AStar that crashed into the sea near Kauai’s Ke’e Beach. Two other passengers and Lampton survived uninjured. Lampton, who continues to work for Heli USA in a nonflying position, is also accused of reckless endangerment, providing a false statement and tampering with evidence.
The Helicopter Association International (HAI) has sent an urgent congressional alert to its members to contact their legislators about resolving continued delays in the FAA’s longstanding commitment to provide National Airspace System-quality communications and weather services in the Gulf of Mexico. According to HAI, more than 35,000 people live and work offshore, supported by nearly 650 helicopters.
At a public hearing yesterday, the NTSB singled out Part 91 operations in a special study on helicopter and fixed-wing EMS accidents. Between 1994 and 2004, the number of accidents doubled, with 83 since 1998. Main accident causes are CFIT, inadvertent operation into IMC and spatial disorientation or lack of situational awareness in night operations.
Excessive speed might have been a factor in Tuesday morning’s fatal crash of a Cessna Citation 560 at McClellan-Palomar Airport in Carlsbad, Calif. The twinjet, registered to Goship Air in Ketchum, Idaho, was tracked by radar with about a 200-knot groundspeed at around 300 feet on final approach. The crew of Citation N86CE, on a flight from Hailey, Idaho, canceled IFR services shortly before the crash.
Canada’s Transportation Safety Board has made recommendations in line with the growing concern from the FAA and NTSB about the safety of Cessna 208 Caravans in icing conditions.
A wrongful-death suit was filed yesterday by the family of the flight attendant killed in the Nov. 22, 2004, crash of a Gulfstream III on a positioning leg to pick up former president George H.W. Bush. Named as defendants are, among others, Dallas charter operator Business Jet Services and the estates of the two deceased pilots.
The Citation 560 (N86CE) crash in Carlsbad, Calif., on January 24 apparently followed an “attempted aborted landing” on Runway 24 at McClellan-Palomar Airport, according to the NTSB’s preliminary report. The two pilots and two passengers were killed. Approaching at a much higher than normal speed, the Citation touched down more than 1,500 feet down the 4,900-foot-long runway. The thrust reversers were deployed, then stowed.
The NTSB in its final report released this morning said the crew of a Hendrick Motorsports King Air 200 lost situational awareness and overflew Martinsville/Blue Ridge Airport, Va., before crashing on Oct. 24, 2004. IMC prevailed and the turboprop twin had been cleared for the Localizer Runway 30 approach.
Three people were killed and one seriously injured on the ground when an Aerospatiale Alouette II crashed on Sunday afternoon in the Camargue region in southeast France. The pilot reportedly suffered two broken vertebrae but the three passengers escaped injury. The privately owned helicopter was attempting to take off near a restaurant where the occupants had had lunch.