2 dead, 1 seriously injured in medical helicopter crash near Apache Junction

22 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Air Methods medical helicopter crashes in Arizona, company says.

PHOENIX (AP) — A medical helicopter crashed in rugged terrain east of Phoenix, killing two crew members and seriously injuring a third, who was still able to use a flashlight to signal search aircraft, a sheriff said Wednesday.The condition of a third crew member, was unclear following Tuesday’s crash of an Airbus AS350 B3, but operator Air Methods said the person was “safe.” “We are deeply saddened by the news that two of our crew members were taken from us, and our hearts go out to their family and loved ones,” spokesperson Christina Brodsly said in a statement. “We can also confirm that one crew member is safe, and that there were no patients onboard the aircraft.” Brodsly said the identities of the crew members would be released at a later time. Babeu said the helicopter was flying from a Mesa airport east to Globe, but he said he did not have any more information on the purpose of the flight. A military aircraft rescued the survivor at about 10:15 p.m., and that person was taken to a trauma center in the Phoenix area in “very serious, critical condition,” Babeu said.

A Native Air helicopter first spotted the wreckage at about 8:30 p.m. and an Arizona Department of Public Safety helicopter located it about a half-hour later, but neither was able to land because of rugged terrain. The crash scene was sealed off overnight to preserve evidence before National Transportation Board Safety investigators arrive later Wednesday, Babeu said.

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