The preliminary report on the September 26 medical helicopter crash in Georgetown County that killed three crew members has been released by federal investigators. The National Transportation Safety Board reports that when investigators examined the main rotor and tail rotor systems, they found evidence that the chopper suffered an overload after the crash. The helicopter had just dropped off a patient at a hospital in Charleston and was flying to Conway, about 90 miles to the northeast, when it crashed at around 11:30 P.M. on Friday September 26. The National Weather Service reported that a thunderstorm had rolled through the Georgetown area shortly before the crash. The NTSB’s report also confirmed that the 2000 Eurocopter was not approved for operation in Instrument Meteorological Conditions. The report also indicated that the copter was not equipped with the latest safety features including a night vision imaging system, an autopilot, nor a terrain avoidance warning system.
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