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Helicopter Carrying Six People Crashes Into Lava Field, Two In Serious Condition

REUTERS/Marco Garcia

Mary Rooke Staff Writer
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A helicopter carrying five passengers and one pilot crashed in a lava field in Hawaii on Wednesday.

A public information officer for Hawaii County, Cyrus Johnasen, said two of the people on board, the 50-year-old pilot and an 18-year-old woman, were in serious condition after the crash requiring an emergency medical extraction to local hospitals, according to The Associated Press (AP).

K&S Helicopters was operating a lava field tour around 5:00 pm near South Point in Hawaii County, Hawaii. The helicopter carrying six people crashed about a mile from the closest road, reported KHON2. The Hawaii Fire Department could not access the crash site forcing the emergency crew to send two helicopters to complete the extraction of all six victims. (RELATED: REPORT: Helicopter Needed To Rescue 99 Students In Austrian Mountains After Teacher Gets Lost On Field Trip)

Johnasen said the pilot was initially trapped in the plane, but the Hawaii Fire Department emergency crew freed him and transported him to a local hospital, where he is in serious but stable condition. However, the 18-year-old female passenger’s serious condition is worsening, reported The AP.

“It’s a fluid situation,” Hawaii County Mayor Mitch Roth told The AP.

The other four passengers were taken to Kona Community Hospital from the scene by an ambulance, reported the KHON2.

Calvin Dorn of K&S Helicopters said the company exercised its emergency response plan, and all company resources will be focused on responding to the crash. “The care of our passengers, crew members, and their families is our highest priority,” Dorn told KHON2.