Dead goose found in crashed medical helicopter's system in Oklahoma, NTSB reports
The cause of the crash was not directly identified in the report. However, other geese were found in a field near the crash site alongside the goose within the flight control system. Samples of bird feathers were collected for identification.
The role, if any, played by the geese in the accident remains uncertain. Yet, it was noted that a review of the US Air Force bird hazard advisory system suggests the likelihood of bird presence near the crash site was low. The National Transportation Safety Board mentions that developing a report on potential causes of the crash could take as long as two years.
The helicopter was returning from a hospital
The accident happened on January 20th, with the helicopter crashing in a pasture approximately 60 miles west of Oklahoma City.
After transporting a patient to the Mercy Health Center helicopter landing pad in Oklahoma City, the crew were returning to their base in Weatherford when the accident happened.
Search efforts for the downed helicopter started around 5:30 PM Eastern Time when contact was lost with the craft's GPS system. The wreckage was eventually located in an open pasture in Hydro.
The loss of the pilot and two Air Evac team members - an onboard nurse and medic - was confirmed in the accident.
All significant elements of the helicopter were located at the crash site, reports indicate.
The principal wreckage consisted of the fuselage, engine and tail rotor. The gearbox had been thrown clear of the main debris. Pieces of the engine rotor were discovered in a nearby field, with a mast nut found amid the surrounding wreckage.