Nurse Dies After Falling from Helicopter

Rescue mission in Austin area turns tragic.

Helicopter Accident McLain
Helicopter Accident McLain
Kristin McLain (Photo courtesy of KXAN)

An accident in Austin, Texas, this week served as a tragic reminder of how rescue crews at times risk their own lives to save others. A medevac nurse working for STAR Flight, an aerial emergency response service in Austin, fell to her death while attempting to rescue a hiker who had fallen in the Barton Creek Greenbelt on Monday evening, a news release from STAR Flight said. The rescue crew had located the woman and was hoisting her and McLain into the EC-145 helicopter when McLain fell from the hoist. She died at the scene.

There was no word of what caused McLain to depart from the hoist. The National Transportation Safety Board and FAA are investigating.

According to STAR Flight's program director Casey Ping, who spoke at a news conference published by local NBC news outlet KXAN, the nurse had been working with STAR Flight for seven years. It was the first on-duty death in the company's 30-year history, according to KXAN.

The patient, who suffered non-life threatening injuries, was transported by STAR Flight to University Medical Center-Brackenridge, the release said.

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