Fire helicopter struck by lightning in Idaho

From the AP, via

MCCALL, Idaho  -Four people were injured when lightning struck a firefighting helicopter in central Idaho while it was on the ground.

None of the employees of Siller Brothers, Inc., a contract firefighting company, suffered life-threatening injuries in Tuesday evening’s incident, but they were transported to hospitals in the region for treatment.

The Sikorsky S64E Air-Crane helicopter was on a national contract with the Payette National Forest to help fight forest fires in the region.

The incident Tuesday night at about 8:45 a.m. took place just as the four crew members were doing end-of-day maintenance.

They were tying the chopper down as high winds hit the area following heavy rain and lightning.

Damage to the aircraft is still being surveyed.


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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.