Serious Injuries In Fiery Crash
ANN REALTIME Update,
0339, 071405: We now know that two
Sheriff's deputies, both pilots, have been killed in this
tragic accident. A third deputy is listed critical condition
at Mercy San Juan Medical Center, after the crash, which
occurred shortly after 1900, just north of Nimbus
Dam, near Lake Natoma.
According to local media reports, one pilot was readying
for a CFI checkride at the time of the
Sacremento Sheriff's Department Statement
Shortly after 7:10 p.m. this evening (7/13/05), Sacramento
Sheriff’s Communications received a “mayday” call
from Star6. The helicopter was having mechanical difficulties and
they were making an emergency landing near Lake Natoma. The
helicopter landed on a hillside when the tail end broke off sending
the helicopter down the hillside.
When emergency personnel arrived at the scene, they
discovered that three Sheriff’s Deputies were onboard what
remained of the helicopter. A small fire broke out surrounding the
As a result of the accident, Deputy Joseph Kievernagel, a
17-year veteran, and Deputy Kevin Blount, a 7-year veteran, were
killed. Deputy Eric Henrikson, a 7-year veteran, is at a nearby
hospital with life threatening injuries.
Further investigation on the cause of this accident will be
conducted by the Department, the NTSB and the FAA.
Due to the accident, the north side of the American River
Bike Trail nearby will remained (sic) closed until the
investigation is complete.
Sergeant R.L. Davis,
Original Report, 0015,
071405: Reports from California indicate that a Sacramento
County Sheriff's Department has crashed in an arroyo with a
post-crash fire burning. There has been some injury or loss of
life. At least three urgent medical evacuation helicopters were
summoned to the scene, along with fire and police personnel.
According to the Sacramento Bee's initial report, three people
were injured -- one is in critical condition, two others have been
The Sacramento County Sheriff's Department Air Support Bureau
operates three modern five-seat Eurocopter EC120 helicopters as
patrol units (photo), with a crew of two sworn Deputy Sheriffs, one
trained as a pilot and the other as an air observer. In addition,
the Bureau has two ex-Army UH-1H "Huey" helicopters that are used
for emergency rescue, personnel transport, and other tasks
requiring a bigger machine. The Bureau's crews fly about 1100 hours
a year, mostly routine patrols.
Aero-News readers are reminded that initial reports of air
accidents are frequently inaccurate.