Posts Tagged ‘search and rescue’

CLICK TO ENLARGE: New Mexico State Police Sgt. Andy Tingwall died in a Search and Rescue mission in 2009 in the Santa Fe area. (Courtesy photos)

Nice gesture from New Mexico State Police here, even if it does coincide with a change in call signs for the department’s entire airborne fleet.

This from an email Tuesday morning from DPS spokesman Tony Lynn:

Effective today the New Mexico State Police Helicopter will now be identified as ABLE-6.  The call sign is being changed so that the previous call sign, N606SP, can be retired to honor fallen helicopter pilot, Sergeant Andy Tingwall.

Sgt. Tingwall was on a Search and Rescue mission in June 2009 near the Santa Fe Ski Basin when the tail rotor of his State Police helicopter struck the mountain side causing a rapid decent and subsequent crash killing Sgt. Tingwall and Megumi  Yamamoto, a stranded hiker  he was trying to rescue from the mountain.

ABLE will now recognize all the State Police rotary wing aircraft.  ABLE is an acronym for AirBorne Law Enforcement.

Here is just one of the many articles posted on The New Mexican website following the 2009 crash:


New Mexico State Police

New Mexico State Police on Saturday evening announced the search in southern New Mexico for a Colorado man missing since Tuesday was over. Here is the statement released by Lt. Robert McDonald:

Catron County —The body of (58) year old Micah True of Colorado was located today. Trues’ body was found in a remote area of the Gila Wilderness.

True has been missing in the Gila Wilderness near the Gila Hot Springs since Tuesday evening March 27. It was reported that (more…)

A message of condolence is posted on a speed limit sign on Hyde Park Road after the 2009 helicopter crash that killed two during a search and rescue mission. (Clyde Mueller/The New Mexican)

The following from Barry Massey’s Associated Press article posted Tuesday on The New Mexican’s Website:

The National Transportation Safety Board says a helicopter pilot’s decision to take off in bad weather is the probable cause of a fatal crash in an attempted rescue of a hiker lost in the mountains near Santa Fe in 2009.

The board said the “organizational culture” of the Department of Public Safety and State Police contributed to the accident because they put a priority on completing missions rather than safety. The board pointed to pilot fatigue, stress of the mission and self-imposed pilot pressure as other contributing factors in the crash.

Here are (more…)