Woman sent spinning during airlift in Phoenix

Woman sent spinning during airlift in Phoenix

The Phoenix Fire Department rescued a 74-year-old woman in Arizona on Tuesday morning from Piestewa Peak in Arizona, according to a report published by ABC15.

After landing, the patient was treated for dizziness and nausea from the spinning, but the effects weren't serious, according to Capt. Bobby Dubnow, a Phoenix Fire Department technical rescue technician who was on the helicopter.

Authorities said the spinning is a known phenomenon, and they train for it.

There's still no word who that woman is and how she is doing on Wednesday, but video of the helicopter rescue has been viewed more than 10 million times online.


He said he was the first to communicate with the injured woman after she was secured. Officials said that a line that was supposed to prevent the stretcher from spinning malfunctioned during the hoist rescue.

He said his department has used a hoist 210 times in the past six years with something similar happening on two other occasions. "Then we slowly brought it back up ... it started to spin again".

"Sometimes if we're in a canyon, it's a strong windy day, it will spin on us", chief pilot Paul Apolinar said.

The spinning was clearly a problem, beginning as rotor wash from the rescue chopper set the stretcher whirling.


The crew reportedly attempted to raise and lower the basket several times, but the spinning went on for about 40 seconds.

What looked to be a routine rescue operation turned into a nightmarish ride for the injured hiker.

The Phoenix Fire Department made a decision to rescue the woman using a helicopter after assessing the situation. The hook attaching the basket to the wire is created to spin-and spin it did.

Rescue crews held a news conference on Tuesday to explain how a person can turn into a pinwheel.


'It's not something that's inherent to the basket or inherent to the bag. Here's hoping her body (and her heart) is OK. "It's just something that occurs every now and then". I got sick to my stomach watching this!'

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