Army Helicopter Crash Lands Two in Hospital

By: Deborah Tuff Email
By: Deborah Tuff Email

It’s always a pilot’s worst nightmare: to crash. However, two pilots, one a beginner and the other a professional found themselves in that situation as their Army chopper spun out of control.

Neighbors wouldn't talk with News 4 on camera, but say they saw a Fort Rucker Army helicopter spiraling out of control until it stopped.

The crash on High Bluff Field in Geneva County resulted in the choppers tail boom being ripped off and the choppers two occupants getting air-lifted to area hospitals.

"A TH-67, which is one of the training helicopters for Fort Rucker crashed on High Bluff, which is near Hartford," confirmed Lisa Eichorn with Fort Rucker's Public Information Office.

The TH-67 is the first helicopter a pilot in training will fly after undergoing simulated training.

Officials aren't releasing the names of either victim, but say they are lucky to be alive as they escaped with only minor injuries.

Fort Rucker officials will take another look at how they train their beginner pilots.

"Fort Rucker takes aviation very, very seriously. And every accident is looked at, to find out exactly what happened so we can learn from it and see if it could have been prevented. Then we'll do everything we can to do that. This particular helicopter is a mainstay at Fort Rucker. It's what every pilot goes through to learn how to fly and we're going to go back in our safety books, take a look at what happened and put those things in place to make sure it never happens again," added Eichorn.

And, as for the neighbors, they have an adjoining garden next to High Bluff Stage. They say usually, they'd be taking care of their greenery and decided not to.

This is the second crash this year for Fort Rucker pilots.

The first happened in March when a Black-Hawk went down over Opp.

Last year, four soldiers on a training flight from Hunter Army Airfield in Savannah Georgia to Ft. Rucker died when their Chinook crashed into a television tower in Georgia.

Investigators later determined that pilot error contributed to the fatal accident

In 2005, an AH-64 D Apache crashed over Hooper Stage Field in Ozark. All the pilots in that crash escaped unharmed.

And, days before that crash, Enterprise Pilot Michael Lee died in a TH-67 flight that went down near a recreation center in Eufaula.

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