Regulatory agencies in the U.S. and Peru have initiated a formal investigation into the Jan. 7 crash of a Columbia Helicopters Model 234 that was supporting petroleum exploration operations near Pucallpa, Peru. The incident resulted in the deaths of seven Columbia employees: Dann Immel, command pilot from Gig Harbor, Wash.; Igor Castillo, copilot (Peru); Edwin Cordova, maintenance crew chief from Melbourne, Fla.; Luis Ramos, aircraft mechanic from Peru; Jaime Pickett, aircraft mechanic from Clarksville, Tenn; Darrel Birkes, senior load manager, who lived in Peru but was originally from Portland, Ore.; and Leon Bradford, load manager from Santaquin, Utah.
Describing a “very sad day for Columbia Helicopters,” President Michael Fahey said he “knew most of these men personally. Our employees are grieving, and we are praying for the family members of the friends we lost.”
Related: Offshore News