Patient Lost, Crew Hurt
A Bell 206B-1 helicopter configured
for medical transport went down in northwest Arkansas Monday,
killing the patient and injuring the three crew members on board,
according to local authorities. Federal and state investigators
rushed to the scene on Tuesday, looking for clues.
Authorities said the aircraft (file photo of type, right) had
been called to the scene of an auto accident in Benton County
Monday afternoon, and was about to transport the injured driver to
a nearby hospital. Witnesses said the aircraft rose to an altitude
of about 400 AGL before it suddenly plunged back to the ground.
While the landing gear was crushed, witnesses said the fuselage of
the aircraft remained upright.
"It started spinning in slow circles, and then it sped up,"
witness Jana Austin told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. "At first,
I didn't think anything was wrong, but when it started spinning
faster, I was a little spooked."
The helicopter fell fast, she said. "I thought I needed to run
because the helicopter could explode."
The Bell 206B-1 was operated by Air Evac Lifeteam, based in West
Plains, MO. The injured crew members were identified by Arkansas
State Troopers as:
- Lead Flight Nurse Dee Ann Miller, 40, Bentonville, AR
- Pilot Dennis Enders, 53, Broken Arrow, OK
- Flight Paramedic Clayton Bratt, 56, Hulbert, OK
FAA Preliminary Accident Report
Make/Model: B206 Description: BELL
Date: 02/21/2005 Time: 1945
Event Type: Accident Highest Injury:
Fatal Mid Air: N Missing:
City: CHEROKEE CITY State: AR
N5734M, A BELL 206 ROTORCRAFT STALLED WHILE TRANSPORTING A
PATIENT AND MADE
A HARD LANDING, THERE WERE FOUR PERSONS ON BOARD, ONE WAS
AND THREE SUSTAINED SERIOUS INJURIES, 2 NORTH OF CHEROKEE
INJURY DATA Total
# Crew: 3 Fat:
# Pass: 1 Fat:
Fat: 0 Ser:
WEATHER: ROG METAR 212035Z 08005KT 10SM CLR 16/07 A2998
Dep Date: Dep.
Flt Plan: UNK
Wx Briefing: U
Last Radio Cont: UNK
Last Clearance: UNK
FAA FSDO: LITTLE ROCK, AR
Entry date: 02/22/2005