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HELICOPTER CRASHES DOWNTOWN; NO SERIOUS INJURIES

By Star-Advertiser staff

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 08:07 p.m. HST, May 08, 2013


Photo Gallery: Helicopter crash in downtown Honolulu

A  helicopter crash-landed in downtown Honolulu this afternoon, but the pilot and passenger walked away with no serious injuries.

A 30-year-old woman pilot and 72-year-old male passenger refused treatment at the scene after the helicopter made an emergency landing, according to the city Emergency Medical Services Division. The male passenger had a cut on his head, and the pilot had no injuries, an EMS spokeswoman

The Federal Aviation Administration said the Robinson R22 Beta helicopter had engine failure and landed on Fort Street, striking a car.

Police closed Beretania, Kukui and Fort streets because of what they called a "non-fatal helicopter crash" at about 3:20 p.m. Beretania Street was re-opened about 5 p.m., but Fort Street remained closed. 

According to the FAA registry, the helicopter with tail number “N5ZK” is owned by HLM Aviation Services Inc., whose agent is Benjamin Fouts. The helicopter was determined to be air worthy or safe to fly on June 10, 1992, according to the registry.

Fouts is listed as the president of Mauna Loa Helicopters, a business that has a training school in Kailua-Kona and Honolulu. Fouts and Mauna Loa Helicopters officials were unavailable for comment.

The pilot was able to land on Fort Street but a rotor hit a parked Mazda sedan severly damaging the car, between the Kukui Plaza building and the fire station on Beretania Street.

Patti Hookano said she was driving on Fort Street when the helicopter flew low over her vehicle.
“It looked like it was driving down the street,” she said.

Hookano pulled into a parking stall and saw the helicopter had crashed and hit the hood of a black Mazda.

"I came from my exam from school and I can't believe I see my car in an accident from a helicopter," said Matthew Lau, the owner of the Mazda. "I'm shocked."

Hookano said she saw a woman helping an older man exit the helicopter.

The helicopter was on a photo shoot above Punchbowl when the it had mechanical problems, said Honolulu Fire Department spokesman Capt. Terry Seelig.  “Very minor injuries, it’s amazing,” he said.

Seelig said firefighters from the nearby fire station heard the crash and helped the pilot and passenger.

Seelig said the pilot did “an incredible job” landing the helicopter. “From where it started contacting the road, it must have been about a couple hundred feet from where it ended up, where it struck this one car,” he said.”And that’s the only damage, besides the helicopter, was this one car – and a parking meter.”

____

Star-Advertiser reporters Leila Fujimori, Gordon Y.K. Pang, Gary T. Kubota, Andy Yamaguchi and Craig Gima contributed to this story.







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LizKauai wrote:
God Bless!
on May 8,2013 | 03:47PM
romei wrote:
wooh, that was just up street from here!!
on May 8,2013 | 04:06PM
CloudForest wrote:
Excellent piloting skills and a wonderful gift from a benevolent God - so happy for all involved.
on May 8,2013 | 04:20PM
localguy wrote:
Good piloting skills save them, not a higher power.
on May 8,2013 | 06:13PM
CloudForest wrote:
Who gave the excellent pilot the abilities to perform such a feat? I choose to believe - you can too!
on May 9,2013 | 01:44AM
aomohoa wrote:
Now that's knowing what you are doing and not panicking.
on May 8,2013 | 04:23PM
IAmSane wrote:
Glad everyone's okay! Sorry to the owner of that Mazda. :(
on May 8,2013 | 04:27PM
budster wrote:
Why did they close Beretania St.! They had Beretania open with no problem. Just the far right lane was closed. Now with Beretania closed, downtown is one big parking lot. 5 LANES OF BERETANIA TRAFFIC MUST TURN LEFT TO BISHOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!THERE IS NO REASON TO CLOSE BERETANIA!!! WHO IS MAKING THESE DECISIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THERE IS NO FATALITIES, THE PEOPLE INVOLVED REFUSED TREATMENT!!!!! WHO IS IT THAT IS UNECCESARILY CAUSING THESE TRAFFIC JAMS!!!
on May 8,2013 | 04:53PM
al_kiqaeda wrote:
Have a Snickers...you're crabby when people don't die.
on May 8,2013 | 05:42PM
localguy wrote:
Someone is old and crotchety.
on May 8,2013 | 06:12PM
IAmSane wrote:
Hahaaha, thanks. That was a great read.
on May 8,2013 | 11:25PM
mikethenovice wrote:
God must be watching me. I was there earlier. I always miss the action by a hour.
on May 8,2013 | 05:19PM
localguy wrote:
Good piloting skills save them, not a higher power.
on May 8,2013 | 06:12PM
livinginhawaii wrote:
They so need to ban these things from flying over homes and businesses. They should only be allowed to fly over water. They are noisy and in constant invasion of everyone's privacy.
on May 8,2013 | 06:42PM
kk808 wrote:
Agree.
on May 8,2013 | 07:08PM
CloudForest wrote:
Get over it - you are only jealous that you have never been willing to risk the joys of flight and the technology it brings to the world at large. I'm sure that the wild kids in their loud Hondas make way more noise on any given day in your neighborhood!
on May 9,2013 | 01:47AM
ross13moon wrote:
what was this aircraft doing flying over a crowded downtown are ? why couldn't it have been landed in the field next to the YMCA where there was more room.... it was only luck no serious injuries...in addition to pedestrians doing the zoombie walk in the street, and driver texting, lookout for falling objects!!!
on May 8,2013 | 06:49PM
mrluke wrote:
The FAA will be calling you assist with their investigation!
on May 8,2013 | 09:10PM
dlum003 wrote:
SWAT came out to investgate a suspicious package inside the chopper.
on May 8,2013 | 07:26PM
pandadaddy wrote:
Imagine the owner of the Mazda filling out the paperwork for the insurance claim.
on May 8,2013 | 08:31PM
mrluke wrote:
My first reaction to this!
on May 8,2013 | 09:10PM
kennie1933 wrote:
"Like a good neighbor, State Farm is....THERE!" Good commercial opportunity. No one would believe it!
on May 8,2013 | 10:40PM
entrkn wrote:
I would fly aywhere with that pilot
on May 8,2013 | 09:24PM
ShibaiDakine wrote:
Robertson helicopters have a troubling track record and have ignited public safety concerns in other communities.
on May 9,2013 | 02:48AM
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