Man injured in ultralight helicopter crash in remote part of Highland County


Pilot located after search, flown to hospital

By David Wright - dwright@timesgazette.com



County officials investigate the scene of an ultralight helicopter crash in the Fort Hill area Friday.

County officials investigate the scene of an ultralight helicopter crash in the Fort Hill area Friday.


David Wright | The Times-Gazette

HIGHLAND CO. — Authorities spent nearly an hour and a half searching a remote part of the county Friday for a man whose ultralight helicopter crash landed, leaving him trapped and injured in a field.

The pilot, whose name was not released by authorities Friday, was responsive to emergency workers as he was evacuated by medical helicopter to Kettering Medical Center, according to authorities at the scene.

Emergency responders with several area agencies responded to Carmel Road near SR 124 shortly after 4:30 p.m. after a caller reported his father had crashed his ultralight helicopter and was pinned inside. The caller said his father told him he was a in a field a little over a mile north of his property on Carmel Road.

With intermittent cell service, limited information and wild terrain, authorities spread out and searched the surrounding areas, even driving with a nearby landowner to the top of a mountain to search for the fallen aircraft.

The sheriff’s office drone was about to be deployed in the area when two construction workers located the ultralight at a property on Carmel Road near Butters Road, a little over 100 feet away from the roadway.

Brad Kennedy, one of the workers, told The Times-Gazette that he and his friend had arrived at the property after work and saw the aircraft lying in a grassy area by a bean field. The two men immediately rushed to the aid of the pilot, who was trapped in the aircraft and badly injured, but able to speak, Kennedy said. According to Kennedy, the pilot had a large gash on his arm, complained of back pain and was having difficulty breathing.

When authorities arrived, the pilot was rushed to the back of an ambulance and treated until a medical helicopter arrived.

A man at the scene who identified himself as the pilot’s son said he calls his father every day after work, and when he called him Friday around 4:30 p.m., his father said he had crashed the ultralight and was hurt. The man declined to release the name of the pilot.

The impact of the landing apparently blew out the ultralight’s windshield, bent its rotors and damaged portions of its frame.

The cause of the crash landing was unknown Friday evening.

Reach David Wright at 937-402-2570, or on Twitter @DavidWrighter.

County officials investigate the scene of an ultralight helicopter crash in the Fort Hill area Friday.
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2018/07/web1_fhelicopter-crash-1.jpgCounty officials investigate the scene of an ultralight helicopter crash in the Fort Hill area Friday. David Wright | The Times-Gazette
Pilot located after search, flown to hospital

By David Wright

dwright@timesgazette.com