Experimental Helicopter Crash Lands in Midland Park - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Experimental Helicopter Crash Lands in Midland Park

MIDLAND, TX (KWES) -

A gyrocopter crash landed Monday afternoon in Windlands Park after taking off from Midland Airpark on a test run, officials said.

Midland County Sheriff Gary Painter and the unidentified pilot were the only two people aboard the small, experimental helicopter. 

Painter said he suffered no visible injuries and did not require hospital treatment, while the pilot was transported to a nearby hospital for "minor back pain."

“We took off from [Midland] Airpark, made a right-hand turn... and [the aircraft] just lost lift," Painter told NewsWest 9. "It was too heavy and it went down."

He said they unexpectedly lost altitude shortly after taking off around 1 p.m. due to "a lack of air in the back propeller." 

Officials are investigating the cause of the crash and have yet to determine whether factors such as wind conditions, speed or structural deficiencies in the gyrocopter played a role.

Painter called the aircraft a "good machine," describing it as "very stout" and "very sturdy." Damage resulting from the crash landing was limited mainly to the front portion of the landing gear, he said, while the inside of the chopper remained intact.

Federal Aviation Administration records list the gyrocopter as "experimental" and "amateur built." The registered owner, Wylie resident Jal Dennis, could not be reached for comment.

Homeowners near the Windlands Park crash site said they were concerned about the proximity of the accident to residential streets.

"I'm really happy no one was hurt, but it could have landed on anyone's house," a resident said.

Another neighbor called the incident "pretty wild" and said it was the first crash landing he had heard about during his three years living near the Airpark.

"It was kind of crazy to think it was so close to the house," he told NewsWest 9.

Officials in Iowa reported a similar gyrocopter crash Sunday night. The experimental aircraft lost altitude, struck a tree and landed in a yard, killing the pilot and injuring his passenger, the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office said.

  • NewsMore>>

  • Person hospitalized after shooting in Arnett Benson area

    Person hospitalized after shooting in Arnett Benson area

    Saturday, June 23 2018 10:46 PM EDT2018-06-24 02:46:43 GMT
    A person was hospitalized after shooting near 3rd Street and Detroit Avenue (Source: Eli Fierro, KCBD)A person was hospitalized after shooting near 3rd Street and Detroit Avenue (Source: Eli Fierro, KCBD)

    A shooting just after 3 p.m. Saturday near 3rd Street and Detroit Avenue has left one person in the hospital at University Medical Center.

    A shooting just after 3 p.m. Saturday near 3rd Street and Detroit Avenue has left one person in the hospital at University Medical Center.

  • Gray Television to buy Raycom Media for $3.6 billion

    Gray Television to buy Raycom Media for $3.6 billion

    Monday, June 25 2018 8:52 AM EDT2018-06-25 12:52:20 GMT
    Monday, June 25 2018 9:08 AM EDT2018-06-25 13:08:26 GMT

    Once combined, the company will have 142 television stations serving 92 markets, making it the third largest television station group in the U.S.

    Once combined, the company will have 142 television stations serving 92 markets, making it the third largest television station group in the U.S.

  • Red Cross serving the Permian Basin in need of more volunteers

    Red Cross serving the Permian Basin in need of more volunteers

    (Source: KWES)(Source: KWES)

    If you want to help people in disasters and emergencies, the Red Cross is having a training in Midland on Tuesday, June 26. It's for anyone who's ever been interested in gaining a full understanding of volunteering with the organization.  

    If you want to help people in disasters and emergencies, the Red Cross is having a training in Midland on Tuesday, June 26. It's for anyone who's ever been interested in gaining a full understanding of volunteering with the organization.  

Powered by Frankly