USAF: Helicopter fall victim used own equipment
NORFOLK, Va. (AP) -- An Air Force report says a civilian who led crews of volunteers through the Sierra Nevada mountains cleaning up marijuana grow sites wasn't properly secured to his harness when he fell to his death from a California Air National Guard helicopter.
Shane Krogen was the 57-year-old founder of the High Sierra Volunteer Trail Crew. He was being lowered to a remote cleanup site in Sequoia National Forest when he fell about 40 feet from a hovering Pave Hawk helicopter last September.
An accident investigation report released by Air Combat Command in Virginia last week says Krogen mistakenly attached the aircraft's hoist to his self-procured, non-load-bearing, plastic D- ring. He was supposed to attach it to a government-issued, load-bearing, metal D-ring. The report says the plastic D-ring snapped, causing Krogen's fall.