POLITICS + GOVERNMENT

Natural Resources helicopter crashes in San Juan County, no injuries

Dec 8, 2022, 3:00 PM | Updated: 4:37 pm
Three wildlife officers on board a state helicopter were uninjured when the helicopter crashed on L...
The La Sal Mountains are pictured at sunset as seen from Moab on Friday, Sept. 17, 2021. (Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)
(Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

MONTICELLO, Utah — Three people aboard a Division of Natural Resources helicopter survived, and sustained no injuries when their helicopter crashed around 11:15 a.m., Dec. 8, on Mount Tukuhnikivatz in the La Sal mountains. 

Aaron Bott, conservation outreach manager with the Division of Wildlife Resources, told KSL TV in an email that a wildlife capture crew, contracted by the DWR, was GPS-collaring mountain goats as part of an ongoing study. 

The San Juan County Sheriff’s Office said a witness called them to report a metallic blue helicopter that went down in the steep terrain of the La Sal Mountains. The witness reportedly said they didn’t see any smoke or fire after the crash.

San Juan and Grand County Sheriff’s as well as search and rescue teams responded to the area and were able to make contact with the helicopter crew. The helicopter is estimated to be a total loss.

Bott said while capturing wildlife in helicopters can be dangerous, the crew is well prepared. 

“Helicopter Wildlife Services is operated by highly trained and responsible professionals who understand the risks involved with their job. Unfortunately, accidents occasionally happen despite the best efforts to avoid them,” said Bott. 

This story will be updated.

 

 

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Natural Resources helicopter crashes in San Juan County, no injuries