* On Sept. 27, 2008, an Aerospatiale (Eurocopter) AS365N1, N92MD, call sign Trooper 2, registered to and operated by the Maryland State Police (MSP) as a public use EMS flight, was substantially damaged when it collided with trees and terrain in Walker Mill Regional Park, District Heights, MD. The flight had been cleared by air traffic control (ATC) for an instrument landing system (ILS) approach to runway 19R at Andrews Air Force Base, Camp Springs, MD. Instrument meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan was filed. The commercial pilot, one flight paramedic, one field provider, and one of two automobile accident patients being transported were fatally injured. The other patient being transported survived the helicopter accident and was taken to a local hospital with serious injuries. The flight originated from a landing zone located at Wade Elementary School, Waldorf, MD, in VFR conditions destined for the Prince George's County Hospital, Cheverly, MD.
* On Oct. 15, 2008, a Bell 222 helicopter, N992AA, operated by Air Angels Inc., and piloted by a commercial pilot, was destroyed when it impacted a radio station tower and the ground in Aurora, IL. A post crash fire ensued. The EMS was en route from the Valley West Hospital Heliport, Sandwich, IL, to the Children's Memorial Hospital Heliport, Chicago, when the accident occurred. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed in the area of the accident site. All four occupants, including the pilot, a flight paramedic, a flight nurse, and the patient, were fatally injured. The flight originated about 10 minutes prior to the accident.
The information being released on five of these nine investigations is factual in nature and does not provide any analysis. It will include investigative group factual reports, interview transcripts, and other documents from the investigation. Additional material will be added to the dockets as it becomes available. The public may view and download the docket contents via www.ntsb.gov, under the "FOIA Reading Room" link on the home page. Analysis of the accidents, along with conclusions and a determination of probable cause, will come at a later date when the final reports on the investigations are completed.
Final reports on four of these investigations, including the probable cause, and brief analysis will be released along with dockets. These cases are the following:
* Dec. 3, 2007, accident involving a Eurocopter BK117C1 helicopter, N141LG, near Whittier, Alaska.
* Dec. 30, 2007, accident involving a Bell 206L-3, N109AE, owned and operated by Air Evac EMS Inc., near Cherokee, AL.
* Feb. 5, 2008, accident involving Eurocopter AS350B2 EMS helicopter, N911VA, near South Padre Island, TX.
* June 8, 2008, accident involving a Bell 407 EMS helicopter, N416PH, owned by PHI Inc., and operated as Med 12, south of Huntsville, Texas.
One of the pilots failed to follow arrival and noise abatement guidelines and the other failed to follow communications guidelines.
The Board found that the pilot failed to adhere to instrument approach procedures when he did not prevent the helicopter's descent at the MDA.
The new rules would require stricter flight rules and procedures, improved communications and training, and additional on-board safety equipment.
On Oct. 14, the NTSB will hold a public board meeting regarding these events.