Taking a look into the Harvest helicopter crash investigation process

WAFF 48's Matthew King reporting
Published: Feb. 17, 2023 at 7:42 PM CST
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HARVEST, Ala. (WAFF) - Military investigators are looking into the cause of the fatal helicopter crash that happened in Harvest on Wednesday afternoon.

Officials say the pieces of the helicopter were transported to a hangar in Redstone Arsenal on Thursday afternoon to determine the cause of the crash. This is one out of three steps of the field investigation process.

The field investigation involves extensive data collection around the crash scene but also around the nearby land.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Army Combat Readiness Center said the next two steps are the completion of the technical report and the command review of the report.

Investigators will take every piece from the crash and re-assemble it to understand what exactly caused the crash.

Military aviation accident attorney Timothy Loranger said they are looking at every possibility.

“Their goal is to make sure they find out whether this was a mechanical failure within the aircraft or a combination of causes,” he said. “That could include looking at how the aircraft was piloted, looking at training, looking at all kinds of issues surrounding the safe operation of a helicopter.”

Loranger said these investigations are difficult on families because they feel heightened anxiety.

“Families prepare themselves for something like this to happen when their loved one goes off to Afghanistan and Iraq and deployed off to the world protecting their country. When they’re home, they expect them to be safe. It’s really hard to wrap their mind around this.”

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