Chainsaw helicopter crash in Georgia

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by Doug F, Mar 5, 2019.

  1. Doug F

    Doug F Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Holy crap...flying <edit> sawblades (not chainsaws)? One pilot who flies and manages the whirling blades? Pilot was alert when taken to the hospital. I wish him the best. Some pics here
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2019
  2. N659HB

    N659HB Pattern Altitude

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    Lather, rinse repeat!
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    Those beasts are scary looking. Hope he has a full recovery.
     
  3. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    I used to fly the McCulloch J-2 Gyroplane, which was built in McCulloch's chainsaw factory in Lake Havasu City AZ ... but helicopters with chainsaws attached for aerial tree-trimming is a new one on me.
     
  4. Kenny Phillips

    Kenny Phillips En-Route

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    They are actually gangs of circular saw blades.
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    Wow. What could possibly go wrong with that? :confused:
     
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  6. asicer

    asicer Final Approach

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    You didn't see James Bond?



     
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  7. IK04

    IK04 Pattern Altitude

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    Crap. A friend of mine works that job, mostly in Alabama and Tennessee. His 369 is black, so it isn't the one in the photo.
     
  8. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Probably safer than the alternative: 4WD cherrypickers on big float tires and tree climbers.
     
  9. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Hughes 500 is a very survivable airframe. They balled up plenty in Vietnam with the pilot & gunner walking away.

    Accident happened next county down from me. This pic was taken a few years back maybe 5 miles from the accident. Not much room for error in that line of work.

    33F0E7A6-2649-4DD3-9F84-4A11AD513F19.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2019
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  10. Mooney Fan

    Mooney Fan Line Up and Wait

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    When I stopped in at Logan KY for fuel last year, there was a helo in the grass standing one of these things up. I had never seen one before and it was red too. Even more surprised what its function was
     
  11. Salty

    Salty Final Approach

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    What keeps the blades aligned with the helo?
     
  12. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 En-Route

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    I talked to a guy that was passing through once with one of these rigs. He said he always has his thumb over the guillotine switch at all times, if the saw snags up you have a split second to release before you get pulled down. Said he lost a few friends over the years doing that job. Definitely a risky mission.
     
  13. DesertNomad

    DesertNomad Pattern Altitude

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    I’ve seen these up close as they used to station one of these in Reno. They had three of those arms all tied together. About 30 giant blades. Crazy.
     
  14. azblackbird

    azblackbird Pattern Altitude

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    Chopper was operated by this company. Same copter on the front of their website is the one that crashed. This wasn't the first time this chopper has crashed. And yet another crash. Those 369's must be some tough copters to be able to survive several crashes and yet be rebuilt so easily.
     
  15. Spring Ford

    Spring Ford Pre-takeoff checklist

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    http://www.rotor-blade.com/videos

    Chopper choppers.

    Following are screen grabs - not links to videos.

    chopper-chopper6.png
    CHOPPER-CHOPPER4.png
    CHOPPER-CHOPPER3.png
    chopper-chopper2.png
    chopper-chopper1.png

    This is a different rig. A more horizontal "48 inch" single blade for "topping".
    CHOPPER-CHOPPER5.png
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2019
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  16. gdwindowpane

    gdwindowpane Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Link said that the pilot died. RIP
     
  17. lbfd101

    lbfd101 Pre-Flight

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    Recently ran across a news story from 2013 in Indiana where a deer hunter had to jump from his tree stand when the helicopter came through with the saw blades. The story said it chopped his stand and crossbow.
     
  18. Wheels

    Wheels Pre-takeoff checklist

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  19. Fallsrider

    Fallsrider Line Up and Wait

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    That is sad news for the pilot. I hate that he didn't survive.

    When I heard about these sawing operations for the first time, it was maybe four or five years ago. I watched a couple of videos on it and was amazed. But I was thinking then, surely there is a spotter on the ground helping to guide the pilot, as well as check for any persons who might be in harm's way. I can imagine a 10 year old boy getting way too close out of curiosity and the coolness factor.
     
  20. Spring Ford

    Spring Ford Pre-takeoff checklist

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    This will of course help but someone intentionally hiding in a tree may well escape detection.
     
  21. Bell206

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    These are used mainly where vehicles can't get to even with big tires or tracks or boats. But once some utility companies saw the production per mile stats their areas of use expanded. This is simply an offshoot of externally flying the electrical line workers via helicopter to work on the lines. It's quicker and at times the only way to get the job done.
    As to ground guides, haven't heard or seen them used for same reasons mentioned above.
     
  22. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I own property along a powerline. Months before the company comes through to cut the trees, they notify me and the other folks who adjoin the ROW of their plans to do maintenance. Of course, a hunter may lease land and not receive such a notification. Our local utility uses the a big tracked tree-mulcher for everything that grows up from below and a guy on a 4WD cherrypicker to lop off the branches that encroach on their ROW. But then, there are no runs longer than a mile without road access and it's fairly benign terrain.
     
  23. Shepherd

    Shepherd En-Route

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    That machine is the stuff nightmares are made of.
     
  24. -KLB-

    -KLB- Pre-takeoff checklist

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    These could certainly explain why sometimes the easement trimming can leave behind such a mess. Part of the driveway at my parents weekend place has a 7KV line overhead, and occasionally they have to get out and move cut branches to the sides before they can get up the driveway. Wish I had some photos of some of the cuts left behind. At least it avoids the ruts (where it isn’t over the driveway) that other equipment can generate.
     
  25. AKBill

    AKBill En-Route

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    I'm sad for the family and friends of the pilot. In the mine I work we have a saying "home safe every shift". It's sad the way a work place accident affects so many. RIP
     
  26. Spring Ford

    Spring Ford Pre-takeoff checklist

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    It's a choice.

    Occupational Fatal Injury Rates among 100 Countries based on TUT paper
    (the research conducted during 2001-2002)[1]

    1. Malta - but sample size is small - pop. 500,000.
    2. UK 0.8 per 100,000 WORKERS
    19. US 5.1
    24. Spain 8.9
    32. China 10

    UK has "Health and Safety" at work NAZIs and the US is towards the bad end of rich countries.

    Road traffic death rates and of course the unmentionable (in the US) firearms deaths are similarly the "will of the people".

    In 1994 France had the same rate of Road deaths as the USA, namely about 15 per 100,000 population per year. After a campaign to reduce it, the rate is as of 2016 in France - 5 per 100,000 per year and the USA is 11 (2015). Of course improvements in vehicle crash safety has helped (this is a choice too) but I think there were a lot of public information campaigns and law enforcement changes as well. There is more driving done in the US I think, but that difference has likely remained about the same over the period.


    [1] https://sites.google.com/site/ryoichihoriguchi/home/occupational_fatality_by_county

    [2] https://data.oecd.org/transport/road-accidents.htm
     
  27. 3393RP

    3393RP En-Route

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    The guys that flew the OH-6 in a scouting role for Cobras took huge risks. Down on the deck for hours, they were vulnerable to shootdown from small arms fire, and there was plenty of it.
     
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  28. Velocity173

    Velocity173 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Read it last year. Right up there with Chickenhawk.

    https://www.amazon.com/Low-Level-Hell-Hugh-Mills/dp/0891417192
     
  29. kyleb

    kyleb Final Approach

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    I'd bet a beer at Oshkosh that comparison is badly skewed by the number of miles driven by US vs French drivers. It wouldn't surprise me at all if US drivers drive over twice the miles their French Counterparts do. It is all about which denominator you choose.
     
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  30. Kenny Phillips

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    Not to mention that improved health care as well as auto safety features reduce the death toll.
     
  31. 3393RP

    3393RP En-Route

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