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A medical helicopter crashed early Friday morning, in Oklahoma City, killing three people and critically injuring a third.

The helicopter, a Eurocopter AS350, was leaving Baptist Hospital to return to its home in Watonga, Okla., when it crashed between St. Ann’s Retirement Center and St. Ann’s Nursing home. No one in the centers was injured.

Preliminary information indicates that pilot helicopter was not talking to air traffic controllers at the time of the accident. The investigation into the crash is ongoing as the FAA and National Transportation Board (NTSB) inspect the wreckage.

Watch an interview with Noble McIntyre and KFOR-TV as he shares his knowledge of these types of crashes which is largely due to the type of helicopter as well as the unfamiliar terrain in emergency situations as opposed to regular situations with regularly lit runways. Noble also discusses what is known as the “Gold Hour” which is a 60 minute window to get those injured in catastrophic accidents the medical help they need.

400,000 patients and transplant organs are transported each year, according to the NTSB. Oklahoma has three air ambulance services.

This is the second fatal EagleMed crash since July 2010.

One Comment

  1. Gravatar for Bill Rice
    Bill Rice

    Some of the things that Noble said are true, nights and weather are the #1 reason for accidents due to IMC and strange LZ's however the flight teams do not just "go" when called. Weather is checked by very strict standards with minimums that are put in place for a reason. We are not cowboys we want to go home at the end of the day. To suggest otherwise, at least from the stand point of the program I fly for, is just a dumb assumption. As far as the "Golden Hour" that applies to trauma which are the " scene jobs" and I would argue that most HEMS jobs are inter facility medical cases going to a higher level of care expeditiously hospital to hospital with secure LZ'S.

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