Valley Public Radio - Live Audio

Helicopter Crash

National Transporation Safety Board

Medevac helicopters transport patients to hospitals that can provide them with the best care. So when a helicopter meant to save lives crashes, it can feel doubly wrong. Four years ago, a medevac helicopter crash near McFarland sent shock waves through the first responder community and made headlines all over the Valley. 

Roger's Helicopters

The names of three of the four people killed when a life flight helicopter crashed in Kern County are now known. However, the cause of the crash remains a mystery.

Pilot Thomas Hampl, Nurse Marco Lopez and Paramedic Kyle Juarez as well as the patient all died when the helicopter went down east of McFarland in Kern County Thursday night.

The SkyLife Helicopter was transporting a female patient from Porterville to San Joaquin Community Hospital in Bakersfield.

American Ambulance CEO Todd Valeri says only about two dozen people work in the life flight division.