Two pilots are being treated for injuries they sustained when the civilian-owned Sikorsky HH-60L Blackhawk helicopter they were flying crashed in a privately owned Moore County field five miles south of Tullahoma on Thursday afternoon.
According to Winston Brooks, spokesman for the Tullahoma Police Department, the Coffee County Communications Center received a crash complaint at 3:16 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 28, from one of the two pilots. The Tullahoma Police and Fire departments, along with Coffee County Emergency Medical Services, the Coffee County Emergency Management Agency and the Moore County Sheriff’s Department, responded to the scene, off Cumberland Springs Road in Moore County, just past the intersection with West Lincoln Street/Cobb Hollow Road.
It took rescue crews approximately 30 minutes to locate the helicopter.
On foot, Tullahoma Police Sgt. Cody Brandon found the helicopter in a remote location near the western boundary of Coffee County and the eastern boundary of Moore County and relayed the coordinates to the Tullahoma Fire Department.
Metro Moore County Sheriff Tyler Hatfield said both pilots were awake and had been able to crawl out of the aircraft.
One pilot was taken to the Tullahoma Airport to be flown by Vanderbilt Life Flight to the hospital for treatment of neck and back injuries. The other pilot was transported by EMS to a local hospital for evaluation. The names of the pilots were not immediately available.
Helicopter owner Arista Aviation Services confirmed both experienced pilots were employees en route to an industry trade show, HeliExpo 2019, in Atlanta. The helicopter departed from Arista’s base in Enterprise, Alabama.
Metro Moore County Emergency Management Agency took charge of the scene Thursday evening.
In a statement released late Thursday afternoon, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said its investigators and their counterparts from the National Transportation Safety Board will work together to determine the “probable cause of the accident.”