Helicopter Makes Hard Landing On Lookout Mountain

GOLDEN, Colo. (CBS4) – A helicopter has made a hard landing while shooting a skateboarding event on Lookout Mountain Sunday afternoon.

Jacki Kelley with the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office said four people on board the helicopter all survived.

The helicopter was covering the Buffalo Bill Downhill race.

The hard landing happened near Buffalo Bill’s Grave Museum.

  • Steve Stevens

    It was a strange sight to see the helicopter arrive just before the final championship race. We were all there at the finish line – looking up at it. It seemed that it was a little lower than it should be – and decending. There must have been a wind which was unexpected to the pilot. All of a sudden the rear prop was cutting pine needles and people scattered under it on the side of Lookout Mountain road, It then quickly settled to the steep hillside just on the side of the road / race course.
    The main rotor continued to spin for several seconds before it was shut down. This was worrisome – but no one was struck by it. The pilot and passengers climbed out and were ushered away … down the road – by the medics which were stationed there at the finish line for the skateboard race.
    As they were ushers away, to a safe distance, they lit up cigarettes and were swearing like you would not believe.
    After they were over 100 yards away – and the crowd was just 20 to 40 yards away, the officials told everyone to withdraw to a safe distance since the helicopter was loosing fuel … it was pitched nose downward at a 45 deg angle.
    I believe that the final championship race was canceled.
    I worry about a forest fire if the fuel were to ignite.

  • The truth

    This is a perfect example of way a Private pilot should not own a flight school and advertise they are the premier high altitude school. I’m glad to see no one was hurt and this will be the last time Colorado Heli ops will endanger the public and other commercial pilots!

  • Steve Stevens

    I would not have called it a “Hard Landing” as the caption indicates. I would class it as a SOFT CRASH.. To try to explain this distinction, I would say that when you see the site where it is, you clearly do not try to “LAND” in a scrubby tree on a 45 degree mountainside slope.
    That is where – if you do arrive there – you have crashed. Now in crashing, if you do it slowly – because the main rotor is still rotor-ing – giving some lift – but you have no control – the arrival (crash) is “Soft”.

  • Unsafe heli ops

    A crash is a crash and this one does not look soft!

  • Open Minded

    So the blame game begins early. No information on what happened or why, just vultures circling and criticizing. Not very professional, not very supportive of the helicopter industry. Rather a bit of cutting the throats of everyone in the business.

  • Steve Stevens

    I am wondering why someone would label themselves as “The Truth”. In their comment when they messed up a few things:

    1) The word “why” should replace “way” in line one.
    2) They are telling fully value judgments – doing no reporting of “Truth”
    3) The pilot here did endanger the public – BUT did not endanger (as reported by “The Truth”) “other Commercial Pilots” in this incident.

    People who were not there and will not tell their name should probably not claim the name “The Truth” when they are venting value judgments.

  • Crash

    Hard landing, my ass. That’s a crash. Good to hear no-one was hurt. I have not heard the best things about management/ownership at this school.

  • Steve Stevens

    Dear “Open Minded”….
    Are you really open minded? I reported what happened … as an Eye Witness.
    I did not cut the throats of everyone in the helicopter business. I wonder why you join the Vultures … slamming all reports.

    Dear “Unsafe …”…
    It was soft – it settled in since (as I explained) the rotor was still providing lift.
    You can go and look at the underside of the fuselage … you will find it is not
    badly damaged – just scratched up by the scrubby shrubs.

    • Really


      You have got to be kidding me?! If they had lift why didn’t they land on the road or did they not have the exprience Heli Ops claims. When there is damage to rotor blades and fusalge that means there was nothing soft about a landing. Also seeing how you want to correct everyone on thier statements it’s a tail rotor not a prop. Prop’s go on airplanes.

  • Gatvol

    Sort of Looks like Steve Stevens could work as Obamas Press Secretary. He certainly is doing damage control on an accident “Crash” that will be listed as “Pilot Error” when all is said and done. “Soft Landing”, who are we kidding here…………only the public..

  • Hmmm..

    Hard landings are to my knowledge, too fast but intentional, ending up in the conventional position. Pretty sure the pilot didn’t intend on landing nose down, skids up! Did he?

  • Boarder's Mom

    Are they going to get it out of the way in time to do the final heat of the race? I mean if everyone is ok, can we get back to the reason it was there in the first place? Sorry if that seems heartless.

  • Flight For Life Son

    Trust me, my dad is a helicopter pilot, and from what i hear, and from the thumbnail he had crashed to what seems to be where the rotor blades loose lift because of the speed of the aircraft. Ergo the reason he was low, and descending, i wasnt there so i dont know his speed, but he pretty much had no choice to land on a road, if the was falling like that. This all could have been caused by wind, and especially since this is a mountain.

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