|Image: AZ DPS|
|Hunter French, Arizona Department of Public Safety pilot, assisted in two tricky mountain rescues over three days.|
Flying injured hikers from mountaintops twice in three days tested the skills of veteran rescue pilot Hunter French.
This dude gets an A-plus.
On March 2, the Arizona Department of Public Safety
chopper pilot helped rescue a Washington hiker who'd fallen into a crevice in the Superstition Mountains.
Three days earlier, French was interviewed by several TV news crews after assisting on a rescue of five teenagers in the White Tanks
. That incident required French to hover carefully a few feet from the mountainside before performing a "long-line" maneuver, in which a patient in a basket and an attending rescue worker dangle below the chopper from a rope.
French also moonlights as a helicopter instructor for Guidance Aviation
, where he's the chief flight instructor for the instrument program.
In the March 2 rescue, French first used his skills to drop off 14
mountain-rescue workers from the skids of his chopper onto a rocky
summit in the Superstition Mountains.
Edward Weston, 47, of Washington, had fallen into a crevice about three-and-a-half miles north of the trailhead for the First Water trail
, according to DPS.More »