N612AZ Sikorsky S-61N - 9 presumed fatal in California


Nine people are believed dead after a helicopter transporting them to a northern California wildfire crashed, a Federal Aviation Administration spokesman said on Wednesday.

FAA spokesman Ian Gregor said on a recorded telephone message that another four aboard the helicopter were critically burned in the crash on Tuesday evening approximately 35 miles (56 km) northwest of Redding in remote terrain.

The helicopter, with a two-person crew and carrying 11 firefighters, crashed under unknown circumstances, Gregor said.

                   NTSB ADVISORY

National Transportation Safety Board
Washington, DC 20594

August 6, 2008


The National Transportation Safety Board has dispatched a Go
Team to investigate a helicopter crash in a remote wooded
area about 35 miles northwest of Redding, California. The
Sikorsky S-61N (N612AZ) operated by the U.S. Department of
Forestry, crashed at about 7:30 p.m. PDT last night during
takeoff. A post-crash fire ensued. Of the 13 people
reported to be on-board, four suffered serious injuries;
nine are unaccounted for and are presumed to be fatally

FAA Preliminary Report


Thoughts and prayors to the famlies.


AP story via msn


Photo of aircraft:



I think the IMG tag needs to go to a link that ends in “jpg” so here the link to referred to by drdisque.

I’ve always liked the larger Sikorsky aircraft. Sad to see this one go down.



The webpage cannot be found

THIS LINK should work.


I remember flying in these as a kid when L.A. Airways used them on inner city flights back in the 60’s. Unfortunately losing 2 in fatal 1968 crashes to metal fatigue issues.