Kobe Bryant Dead in Helicopter Crash

Really? I think Jackson was much bigger. I have heard of Kobe, but that’s it. I don’t even know what he looks like. He is not known all around the world, Jackson was.

Regardless of who he was, it’s sad that he has gone. And it must be really tough on his family. They have my sympathies.

It also seems to indicate that private planes are not such a good idea. A number of celebrities gone that way. And I must admt that I would not to use a helicopter more than absolutely necessary - and so far it has not been necessary. When something goes wrong, it goes really wrong.

Kobe had a helicopter that’s usually owned by Charter Companies. He certainly had the wealth to keep it maintained and hire a excellent pilot.

They would have been ok if they had listened to the No Fly warnings. Only a instrument rated pilot should have attempted flying in that thick fog. That’s assuming the helicopter was properly equipped and certified.

It will be a long investigation and no doubt the pilot’s experience and licenses will be widely reported in the news.

Aviation accidents like this are even more tragic because it was preventable.

If it helps, they apparently hit the mountain at 161 knots (185mph) in dense fog.

They never knew what happened.

That a pilot operating under “see and avoid” procedures would be flying near maximum speed with near-zero visibility in a hilly area is astonishing.

Roughly the equivalent of driving 80 mph in a blinding snowstorm.

I read this and am wondering if they realized what was going on with the maneuverings of the pilot, though. I believe he went up and down and was moving around enough for people to know there was an issue.

Luckily you are not a Washington Post reporter:
Washington Post journalist [Felicia Sonmez] is suspended after tweeting a link to a 2016 story about Kobe Bryant’s rape case just hours after he died in helicopter crash

Here is a list of all the people who died:
Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna
College baseball coach John Altobelli and his wife, Keri, were on board the helicopter with their daughter Alyssa, who played on the same club team as Gianna Bryant.
Christina Mauser, the top assistant coach of the Mamba girls’ basketball team
Ara Zobayan, pilot
Mother and daughter Sarah and Payton Chester

Per Fox 5 San Diego, friends said the pilot was IFR rated.

Pilot/tower radio chatter

Others are getting death threats.


Wow. That’s so irresponsible.

Given that the LAPD had grounded their helicopters I wondered if the pilot had called for special VFR. The radio radio log confirms that was the case.

My guess is that he was following 101 and where it bends South he mistakes Las Virgenes RD for it and starts following that. When he realizes the the heading is wrong he starts climbing. He makes it to 2400 ft above sea level before a 4000 ft per minute descent and crashes at about 830 ft above sea level. So if my math is right he’s descending at 67 feet per second. with a difference of 1530 feet to impact that would have taken about 23 seconds.

And for those who don’t know what “Special VFR” is it’s approval to operate in a controlled air space below VFR minimums. It has to be asked for by the pilot and approved by the tower. Normal VFR requires 3 miles of visibility. To my understanding it’s done with the understanding that the visual conditions beyond the airport meet VFR conditions and this is to allow a temporary transition to that airspace. I’ll have to listen to the radio transmissions again but I believe the tower asks the pilot if he is currently VFR as he approaches their airspace.

If the pilot was inadvertently making a controlled turn/roll then the passengers would not necessarily feel it. A controlled turn keeps you centered in your seat.

And if that’s the case then the pilot would also not feel it and it then becomes disorienting if the instruments are showing a banking roll and visually it’s all a blur.

Here’s avideo of Bob Hoover pouring iced tea in a barrel roll.

My apologies if this was mentioned upthread, but that map/image in the link is incorrect. They were reportedly headed to a game/practice in Thousand Oaks, California, and planned to land at Camarillo Airport, which is about 25 miles west of the crash site (just east on that map of where that largish river on the left meets the ocean, which is Ventura). The San Gabriel Airport (formerly El Monte Airport) would not have been a stopping point.

Forgive me if this was posted, but here is a pretty good description from an eye(ear?) witness. Guy does a good job explaining how it sounded.

He sounds credible, but his observations don’t align with the ADSB data. For example, at no point was the copter hovering overhead.

That is really good. The comments are great too. This news has all been shocking but also the coverage has been predictably oversaturated.

what the person said was that the copter was making a slow left turn. the word “hovering” was used to describe a slow search pattern.

All that is consistent with a deviation from rt 101 and a turn/climb which would make sense. if you have hills around you it makes sense to slow your forward movement and climb to avoid terrain.

The ear-witness also described a fully functioning machine that wasn’t in distress so mechanical failure is probably not the cause. It’s looking more and more like disorientation. If the pilot was in a roll without any visual reference points and was distracted with the radio then the ear-witness’s 20 second estimate is close to the time I calculated in the descent from 2400 ft to 830 ft at 4000 fpm.

At the time the pilot made that left turn, they were moving along at 120+ knots, more than 140 mph. Hardly a slow search pattern.

I would assume that a helicopter would have a terrain database loaded into the GPS. If it’s not something found in certified panels then it’s easily added to personal equipment. the subscription costs are negligible and the information it provides is substantial for anyone flying at low levels or in in mountainous conditions.

your cite is a minute by minute playback. If you go to the second to last minute you’ll see ground speed of a 110 knots at an altitude of 2125. At that point it was in a climb which explains the reduced horizontal speed (ground speed). a minute later the altitude is 1500 feet with a ground speed of 156 knots.

the ear-witness talked about a 20 second flyover.