CHALMERS, Ind. — A pilot died about 3:50 p.m. Tuesday when his helicopter crashed near the southwest corner of White County Roads 700 South and 150 East, Indiana State Police Sgt. Kim Riley said.
The name of the man flying the helicopter is not being released, pending the notification of his family, Riley said. The pilot was the only person on board the aircraft.
"Basically, they were stringing power lines, and at this point in time, for unknown reasons, the helicopter came down and crashed," Riley said.
Crews on the ground pulled the pilot from the wreckage and began CPR. Emergency medical technicians arrived on scene a short time later, but the pilot died there, according to Indiana State Police.
The line of newly constructed metal high-power towers running from the northwest to the southeast have spools of lines suspended beneath them. The eastern spool has a slack power line extended over County Road 700 South, reaching to the first tower north of the county road. However, north of there, it appears the line is lying on the ground.
The helicopter pilot was a subcontractor working for EC Source out of Mesa, Ariz., which was the company stringing the power lines. According to its website, it specializes in the construction of extra high-voltage lines. Riley said EC Source was the contractor installing the lines on the high-voltage towers southeast of Chalmers.
The Journal & Courier left messages for Jonathan Sharp, senior vice president of EC source. He did not return the calls.
The twisted wreckage lies about 50 yards south of County Road 700 South.
Investigators from the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are expected to be on scene Tuesday and Wednesday, Riley said.
EC Source (ECS), together with its subsidiary construction related professional service providers, is a nationally recognized full-service EPC program management entity focused on financing and deploying Extra High Voltage (EHV) electrical systems in North America. ECS is staffed with recognized industry leaders in project planning and execution of large-scale electric transmission and substation projects, including full service environmental planning, engineering, procurement, and construction activities.
ECS is engineering led and construction focused, specializing in large fixed price, competitively bid EHV transmission line and substation projects, guaranteeing quality, performance, and schedule. ECS has offices nationwide.
Time: 15:50 LT
McDonnell Douglas 369FF
Owner/operator: Rogers Helicopters
C/n / msn: 0044FF
Fatalities: Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities: 0
Airplane damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location: White County, SE of Chalmers, IN - United States of America
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
The fatal accident occurred while slinging power cables.
Rogers Helicopters was a subcontractor working for EC Source of Mesa, AZ which was the company stringing the power lines.
We provide the following helicopter services::
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The precision required to lift heavy loads in challenging terrain is a hallmark of Rogers expertise. The expansion of power grids and transmission towers is ongoing and Rogers works closely with general contractors erecting towers and repairing infrastructure. Helicopters are the most efficient, cost-effective solution to effectively remove, replace and install utility equipment when location and terrain are of concern.
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