Federal investigators are now looking into whether proper safety measures were taken, following a firefighter’s terrifying fall during a dramatic helicopter rescue in Hawaii.
The Honolulu firefighter fell about 30 feet to the ground after his rescue basket got snagged on a utility pole line.
Video of the incident shows the rescue chopper pulling the hiker – who is still inside the basket – to safety. He’d apparently suffered a medical emergency, while hiking near the Diamond Head Crater tourist trail back in early September.
The incident has caused many to question the safety measures that were in place at the time of the accident –which was downplayed by the Honolulu Fire Dept initially.
HFD officials first told local media that the firefighter’s condition was stable.
It was later revealed, however, this was a much more serious accident. NTSB investigators found that the firefighter was left with broken bones and cracked ribs and is still recovering from his injuries.
HFD has since grounded the pilot of the helicopter, KHON reports. There were no harnesses or helmets seen in the video– on the hiker or the firefighter. The local report also noted that it seemed odd that the ground crew signaled them to go so close to the power line.
Members of the local firefighter’s union say more needs to be done and there needs to be more accountability.
HFD put out statement saying in part, it “will take the appropriate actions to address any issues that come to light from this investigation.”
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