Snowmobiler strikes landed Black Hawk from Fort Drum

A video screen grab shows the damaged rear section of an Army Black Hawk helicopter that was struck by a snowmobile.

By MARCUS WOLF | The Watertown Daily Times | Published: March 15, 2019

FORT DRUM, N.Y. (Tribune News Service) — A snowmobiler struck a stationary Black Hawk helicopter from Fort Drum on Tuesday evening at the Albert Farms airstrip in Worthington, Mass.

Trooper James Deangelis of the state police department in Massachusetts said the 43-year-old man operating the snowmobile was airlifted to Baystate Medical Center, Springfield, Mass., with unspecified injuries. Deangelis was unaware of the cause of the accident.

Julie Halpin, director of Fort Drum Public Affairs, wrote in an email that soldiers from the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade landed in Massachusetts after a day of training and waited to fly back to post at night using night-vision goggles for a routine practice flight. Crew members were onboard the offline aircraft when the snowmobiler struck it, but no one was injured.

"The crew called 911 immediately when the accident occurred and two crew members provided first aid to the injured individual until local (emergency medical technicians) arrived," Halpin wrote.

The stabilator, or combined stabilizer and elevator at the tail of the helicopter, was damaged in the accident.

Halpin wrote in another email that the helicopter and crew returned to post Wednesday afternoon.

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