A medical helicopter crashed yesterday, Monday, December 10, in Compton, near Rochelle, Illinois.According to the Chicago Tribune, Rockford Memorial Hospital owned the chopper, which was traveling to a medical facility 60 miles (96 km) south of Mendota, Illinois.
At 8:30 p.m. local time the helicopter crashed, as it was passing a field in Rochelle, killing the entire flight crew. Two nurses and a pilot were on board, Rockford spokeswoman Laura Maher says.
According to the FAA, the helicopter was smashed in the crash. No patients were being transported at the time of the accident, Maher adds.
Emergency personnel arrived at the scene, as authorities set up a perimeter around the crash site, near the intersection of U.S. Route 30 and Illinois Route 251. Rockford is located 80 miles north-west of the city of Chicago.
A rep by Lee County Sheriff's Office confirms that the staging area is located between Rochelle and Mendota; however, no further details have been provided by the dispatcher. Check back, as we will keep you updated as this story unfolds.
A similar incident occurred around Aurora in October 2008, as a medical chopper stroke a radio tower above the town. Three crew members and a 1-year-old girl, a patient being flown in the helicopter, were killed on site.
Last month, we reported about a helicopter wreck being found 8 years after it had disappeared, in New Zealand. 28-year-old British tourist Hannah Timings was traveling in the chopper, having rented it out to visit the country. The pilot was 27-year-old local pilot Campbell Montgomerie.
Neither the piece of equipment, nor their bodies had ever been found, until human remains were uncovered on board a Hughes 500 discovered on the ground, on rugged terrain.
The pilot had sent a last radio message from that area; however, search crews had come up empty at the time.