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Helicopter down in central Ontario

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Helicopter down in central Ontario

Old 11th Aug 2019, 12:20
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Ontario, Canada
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Helicopter down in central Ontario

Near Cooper?s Falls Helicopter Crash Near Cooper?s Falls News Centre

This pilot did a good job of a bad situation. I was called to fly a search for an "airplane down", and given a lat/long by dispatch. The loctaion is about a 15 minute flight north of my home. When I found the crashed helicopter, right where I was told to look, an occupant at the site gave me a good wave, and then lit a signal fire which he'd obviously prepared in advance. While monitoring 126.7, I heard an SAR helicopter on the way from Trenton Airbase, so I briefed him, and lead him into the site, while orbiting high. The helicopter which had crashed appeared to have autorotated into a good choice of a spot, and there were other suitable landing areas very close, one of which Trenton used. SAR techs were easily able to walk to the site. Otherwise ground access would have been really difficult, and probably not before sunset.

I don't know any details of the event of the crash, but the pilot obviously did a lot of things right in a bad situation. I suspected that someone had been injured, as the SAR helicopter flew right over my house after I had landed back at home. I presume he was on his way to hospital in Toronto, rather than home to Trenton.

But it all reminds me that we must be prepared when flying over remote areas, even just north east of Orillia 20 miles, it's rough out there. People think of it as "cottage" country, but if you're well off a road, it's remote. Help will come, but it'll be a search over/in rough terrain, rather than drive up to your 911 address! So make yourself easy to find, which this pilot did, and be prepared to spend a night if you can't be rescues as quickly as you'd hope.
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Old 12th Aug 2019, 07:10
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Join Date: Dec 2011
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Help will come, but it'll be a search over/in rough terrain, rather than drive up to your 911 address!
Coincidentally, I came across a brilliant app called What3words which encodes every location on earth, no matter how remote, to a unique combination of three words (the clue is in the name... )

If you have it on your phone or on a tablet linked to a sat phone if you are somewhere really remote, opening the app immediately gives you the three word combination unique to your exact location.

Apparently many if not most emergency services are able to use this system.
Jonzarno is offline  
Old 12th Aug 2019, 08:46
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Originally Posted by Jonzarno View Post
Coincidentally, I came across a brilliant app called What3words which encodes every location on earth, no matter how remote, to a unique combination of three words
As opposed to a unique combination of two numbers.
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Old 17th Aug 2019, 11:39
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Pilot DAR

You are were the action is, indeed!
I hope the injured person is recovering rapidly.
The freedom of Flight is something to be cherished, especially in a Great country as Canada.
Being prepared for the worst and having fellow Aviators that are ready to launch is indeed valuable.
No fun sitting out the night with an injured person.

Regards
Cpt B
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