Two survive Pine Nut helicopter crash landing | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Two survive Pine Nut helicopter crash landing

The pilot of a helicopter that crashed Wednesday afternoon in the Pine Nut Mountains was able to seek care on his own. The small, private helicopter crashed near Horseshoe Bend along the East Fork of the Carson River. Douglas County Sheriff's Sgt. Pat Brooks said the pilot, Doyle Holden, advised that he and a friend, Karen Cole, had taken the Rohinson R22 Beta II helicopter to fly in to fish the Carson River. After fishing, they lifted off of the ground and experienced a malfunction, causing a crash landing. Holden and Cole suffered minor injuries, and contacted another pilot, who flew in and transported them out of the mountains for medical treatment. Emergency units determined there was no spill requiring a hazardous materials response. The exact time of the crash was not available, but medics were called to the Gardnerville hospital at 4:15 p.m. The investigation into the crash will be conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board.

Helicopter crashes at Donner Summit near Truckee

A helicopter crash occurred near Donner Summit, according to California Highway Patrol-Truckee, with police responding to the scene late Tuesday afternoon. The crash resulted in only minor injuries and was not part of efforts to control the Farad Fire.

Helicopter crashes near Rubicon Trail

Emergency personnel are currently responding to a helicopter crash near the area of Buck Island Lake, located near the Rubicon Trail. There does not appear to be any fatalities. However, there are injuries, according to the El Dorado County Sheriff's Office. The Sheriff's Office has not confirmed the number of people on board the helicopter. Cal Star 6 is currently on scene and assessing injuries. The FAA has also been notified. Authorities were notified of a possible helicopter crash on the Rubicon Trail about 1 p.m. today. Deputies assigned to the trail patrol arrived on scene and verified a downed helicopter near the area of Buck Island Lake, according to the Sheriff's Office. More details will be available soon.

4 hurt in Zephyr Cove crash

A two-car accident along Highway 50 at Zephyr Cove sent one person to Washoe Medical Center with moderate injuries via a CALSTAR helicopter while three other people suffered minor injuries, a Nevada Highway Patrol official said. The accident occurred Monday at 4:39 p.m. The crash clogged the highway and an hour after the accident traffic was still slow-going, with one lane open in each direction. The identity of the victims and the cause of the crash were not immediately known.

Medical helicopter crashes into Honey Lake north of Reno

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Two people were rescued and a third is missing after a medical helicopter crashed Thursday into a remote desert lake north of Reno. The Mountain Life Flight helicopter, based in Susanville, Calif., was returning after flying a patient to Washoe Medical Center in Reno when it crashed into Honey Lake in eastern California, 60 miles north of Reno, authorities said. There were no patients on board, and the names of the crew were not immediately released. The flight nurse, a 45-year-old man, was in critical but stable condition at Lassen Community Hospital in Susanville, said Marcelle Rice, a dispatcher for Mountain Life Flight Co. “He had a lot of broken bones,” Rice said. The paramedic, a man also about 45, was being taken by helicopter to Washoe Medical Center with suspected back injuries, Rice said. The pilot is in his early 50s and was still missing as night fell. Divers with the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office were searching the shallow lake. All three crew members are from Susanville, Rice said. The Lassen County Sheriff’s Office, California Division of Forestry, Nevada Highway Patrol and the Nevada National Guard assisted in the rescue. The crew was returning from Reno when the pilot radioed in at 1:34 p.m. that he was about 10 minutes away, Rice said. When the helicopter didn’t arrive, the helicopter transport company began organizing a search that quickly included two helicopters from other agencies along with ground searchers. A helicopter rotor blade was seen protruding from the lake’s surface about an hour later, Rice said. Authorities in Reno described the AS-350B single-engine helicopter as a high-performance aircraft commonly used for air medical services. They also say visibility was good and winds were light. Lassen County authorities said the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the crash.

Official says tour helicopter scraped rocks before crash

LAS VEGAS (AP) – A Grand Canyon tour helicopter scraped a rock outcropping before crashing into a hillside, killing the pilot and five passengers, a sheriff’s official said. The sole survivor of the Friday crash, a 25-year-old mother of two, remained in critical condition Tuesday at a Las Vegas hospital with burns over 80 percent of her body. Steve Johnson, Mohave County, Ariz., sheriff’s spokesman, said Tuesday that a sheriff’s detective found that the helicopter struck hillside boulders, traveled a short distance downhill and hit the ground. ”There was evidence of scraping on the rocks just above the crash site itself,” Johnson said. ”It indicates to us the aircraft was following the slope of that hill down, then there was the scrape and farther down there was the helicopter itself.” Sheriff’s investigators don’t know what caused the helicopter to crash into the rocks, Johnson said. National Transportation Safety Board investigators said it was premature to make any comment about the significance of the marks. ”We are still in the information gathering portion of the investigation,” said Lauren Peduzzi, NTSB spokeswoman. ”As part of the more detailed and ongoing investigation we will look at what those marks mean.” Jerry Snyder, FAA spokesman in Los Angeles, deferred comment to the NTSB about the cause of the crash near Meadview, Ariz. Johnson said the detective – an experienced aircraft and vehicle crash investigator – noted the scraped rocks were a few yards below the crest of a rugged cliff. Johnson said most of the damage to the aircraft was from fire, not the result of impact. An autopsy Monday revealed that the pilot, Kevin Innocenti, 27, of Henderson, Nev., burned to death, the sheriff’s spokesman s aid. Between 75-100 family members, Papillon employees and others from the air tour industry attended a memorial service Tuesday at the Papillon Grand Canyon Helicopter company’s hangar in Las Vegas. The informal ceremony included remarks from Innocenti’s father, Franco Innocenti, and Papillon’s owner, Brenda Halvorson. Company officials said family members planned to visit the crash scene by helicopter afterward. In New York, the dead – David Daskal, Shayie Lichtenstein, Avi and Barbara Wajsbaum and Aryeh Zvi Fastag – were mourned Monday by several hundred people during Orthodox Jewish ceremonies in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Borough Park. The Maricopa County medical examiner’s office in Phoenix released the cause of deaths Tuesday. Daskal and the Wajsbaums died from blunt trauma and burns, while Fastag burned to death. Lichtenstein died from head injuries. In Las Vegas, University Medical Center doctors were closely watching Chana Daskal, David’s widow. She was reported to be heavily sedated while being monitored for swelling and infection from her burns. Friday’s crash was in unregulated airspace outside the Grand Canyon’s special flight rules area, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman said. The crash site by Grand Wash Cliffs, a scenic area between Grand Canyon National Park and the Lake Mead National Recreation Area, is subject to noise, altitude and other federal restrictions that have been focus of air tour industry criticism in recent years. — On the Net: http://www.ntsb.gov http://www.arizonaguide.com/papillon

Motorcyclist killed in Monday collision

A motorcyclist from Ben Lomond, Calif., was killed and a Tahoe City woman was arrested Monday morning following a crash near Rubicon Bay, on Lake Tahoe’s west shore. John McCabe, 52, died of “extensive injuries” at the scene of the crash near the intersection of Highway 89 and Mountain Drive about 11:40 a.m., El Dorado County Sheriff’s Lt. Pete Van Arnum said. McCabe was riding a 2005 Yamaha motorcycle south on Highway 89 when Maria Cabrera, 35, allegedly turned left from Mountain Drive in front of him, causing the collision, according to a California Highway Patrol report. A helicopter was called to the scene, but McCabe died of his injuries before the air ambulance arrived. Cabrera, who was driving a 2002 Dodge Durango at the time of the crash, was arrested on suspicion of driving without a license. She was booked into El Dorado County Jail in South Lake Tahoe. Alcohol does not appear to be a factor in the crash, according to the CHP report. Cabrera remained in custody Tuesday evening. It is unknown whether she has an attorney.

Accident sends two people to hospital

A car crash on Highway 50 between Twin Bridges and Strawberry sent two people to the hospital with one being transported by helicopter to Reno for critical injuries, a Lake Valley Fire Protection District firefighter said. The Jaws of Life were used to extricate the two patients who were taken to the hospital after the Saturday afternoon crash. The highway was closed for 20 minutes to land a helicopter from Auburn on the asphalt. In other news: — A garage fire caused by discarded fireplace ashes in a plastic trash can caused an estimated $5,000 in damage to a house along the 2300 block of Marshall Trail, a firefighter with the Lake Valley Fire Protection District on reported. The Sunday morning fire at 11:44 caused no injuries as the house’s occupants were outside on the street after smelling smoke and calling the fire department, Fire Marshal Gareth Harris stated. Less than 100 gallons from one hose line doused the flames, which caused minor damage to a vehicle parked in the garage, Harris stated. “The fire was contained to the garage with smoke damage throughout the residence,” Harris stated.

One killed in crash near Zephyr Cove

A 24-year-old Lodi woman was killed and four people were injured following a Sunday crash near Zephyr Cove. About 3 p.m. troopers from the Nevada Highway Patrol responded to reports of a two-vehicle crash on U.S. Highway 50, according to a statement from the NHP. Preliminary investigation has found a white 2011 Toyota Corolla 4-door-sedan driven by Eduardo Vizcarra-Sicairos, 29, was traveling west in the inside lane of the highway when it skidded out of control across the double yellow-line and was struck by an eastbound 4-door Hyundai Elantra. Reyna Vizcarra, a passenger in the front seat of the Corolla and Vizcarra-Sicairos' wife, was killed by injuries sustained in the crash and was pronounced dead at the scene. Two emergency medical helicopters responded to transport victims. Four people were taken to Renown Regional Medical Center in Reno, according to the statement. The driver of the Elantra, 26-year-old Carson City resident Shanna White and one of her passengers, 21-year-old Carson City resident Kellie Kerklay, have been treated and released, according to the statement. NHP said Vizcarra-Sicairos and Katelyn Kraiprai, a 21-year-old Carson City resident who was also riding in the Elantra, remain hospitalized. The vehicles came to rest on their wheels following the crash and blocked much of the highway for several hours. All travel lanes were reopened about 7:40 p.m. The cause of the crash remains under investigation. Heavy rain and hail were falling at the time of the crash and wet conditions may have contributed to the collision. Trooper Kris Satterwhite of the Major Accident Investigation Team is investigating the crash. The NHP encourages anyone with information to contact him at 775-689-4682 or ksatterwhite@dps.state.nv.us regarding case number NHP-130600878.

Helicopter crash hero owns local home

The pilot of a crashed Los Angeles Fire Department helicopter who steered the crippled aircraft away from residences and likely saved lives Monday has a residence in South Lake Tahoe. Steven Robinson, who survived the crash and is in serious but stable condition at a hospital in Los Angeles, recently built a house with his father on Silverwood Circle. He underwent surgery on a fractured right leg and suffered a concussion, according to Adelaida De La Cerda, spokeswoman for County-USC Medical Center. Robinson, 32, of Agoura, and his medical team responded to a vehicle crash Monday morning to airlift an 11-year-old girl who had life-threatening head injuries. The chopper was en route to a Los Angeles area hospital when it plunged to the ground, said Deputy Fire Chief Davis Parsons. About 10 minutes into the flight, the pilot “was in trouble for whatever reason,” and appeared to steer the aircraft to avoid homes, Parsons said. The helicopter reportedly lost its tail rotor and clipped trees before slamming onto a grassy area. Authorities found a piece of tail rotor a half mile from the crash site. According to the Los Angeles Times, Janet La Pietra, Griffith Park resident, saw the crash and Robinson’s heroic actions. “He wanted to land, but I guess he was avoiding the homes,” the Times quoted La Pietra as saying. Nancy Geczy, of Tahoe City, whose son has been a longtime friend of Robinson’s, said heroics are inherent in Robinson’s personality. “If you needed to rely on someone, I’d be glad Steve’s the one,” Geczy said. Robinson and Geczy’s son went through the Los Angeles Fire Academy together and shared an apartment. The crash killed Michael A. Butler, 33, a firefighter-paramedic from Arleta; Michael McComb, 38, a helicopter crewman from Crestline; Eric F. Reiner, 33, a firefighter-paramedic from Carson; and Norma Vides, the 11-year-old automobile crash victim. Firefighter Dennis Silgen, 52, of Thousand Oaks, was injured in the crash, and is also in serious but stable condition at County-USC Medical Center. Silgen suffered facial fractures and a fractured hip and leg. He underwent surgery Monday to clean out his leg wound, De La Cerda said. Geczy said Robinson and his father, Dennis, fly to the basin from Los Angeles whenever they have the opportunity. Robinson was in South Lake Tahoe over the holidays and spends a lot of time here during the summer, according to Geczy. “He’s a remarkable young man,” Geczy said. “He’s a hero for getting the copter down away from those homes. “His efforts prevented more loss of life.” The Associated Press contributed to this story. Tahoe Daily Tribune E-mail: tribune@tahoe.com Visitors Guide | News | Diversions | Marketplace | Weather | Community Copyright, tahoe.com. Materials contained within this site may not be used without permission. About tahoe.com…