Medical Helicopter Crashes


A medical helicopter ran into storms and crashed in South Carolina late Friday night, killing all three crewmembers.


The helicopter was attempting to land in Georgetown.


The victims were identified as paramedic Randolph C. Dove, 39, of Bladenboro, N.C.; pilot Patrick Walters, 45, of Murrells Inlet, S.C.; and flight nurse Diana Conner, 42, of Florence, S.C.


The helicopter had flown a patient to a hospital in Charleston, S.C.


Just before the fatal crash, a thunderstorm had rolled through the Georgetown area.


According to Robert Sumwalt, an NTSB member, the crew had reported to its company, Texas-based OmniFlight, they were trying to land.


The helicopter landed nose-first, upside down. It was completely unrecognizable and consumed in the post-crash fire.


The maintenance of the helicopter will be investigated.


Omniflight spokesman Joel Hochhalter said the company was suspending service in Conway. The downed helicopter was the company’s only one in that area
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