Navy Pilots Caught On Camera Grounded Over Lake Stunt
YouTube Video Allegedly Shows Pilots Dipping $33M Helicopters In Lake Tahoe
Last Updated: 1176 days ago
Two Navy helicopter pilots from North Island Naval Air Station have been grounded over a YouTube video that allegedly shows them dipping the $33 million aircrafts into Lake Tahoe.In the video taken Sept. 14, both helicopters hit the water and one seems to spin out of control and crash into the water before its pilot apparently pulls the craft back into the air.A Navy spokesman confirmed that the video was genuine footage of two MH-60 Romeo helicopters from North Island's Helicopter Maritime Strike 41 squadron, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported.Former Air Force pilot Chuck Grace said after watching the video it was incredible the pilot was able to pull the aircraft out of the water but wondered what they were doing over Lake Tahoe."These two pilots shouldn't have been where they were, shouldn't have been that low and shouldn't have been what they were doing, I think," said Grace.North Island Naval Air Forces command spokesman Lt. Aaron Kakiel told the newspaper the pilots were grounded pending an aviation mishap board investigation.Lake Tahoe is not a normal training area for Navy pilots. The helicopters were being flown home to North Island from an air show at Mather Air Force Base near Sacramento, the Union-Tribune reported.Former naval aviator Jim Kidrick said it would not be out of the ordinary to do some training while on the way back."You have a tremendous amount of free air space that is everywhere that you can do certain things so long as it is within the bounds of the legality we fly within," said Kidrick.Damage to the helicopters was estimated at between $50,000 and $500,000, according to the newspaper, which reported that the grounded pilots had to land at Lake Tahoe Airport following the incident and a different set of pilots eventually flew the helicopters home.