KOBE BRYANT: Former Pilot Said Helicopter Was Like a Limo

Written by on January 27, 2020

Kobe Bryant‘s former pilot said the helicopter that crashed Sunday morning in Calabasas, California, killing the NBA legend, his daughter and seven others, was like a limo and had a strong safety record.

From 2014 through 2016, Kurt Deetz flew Bryant and nine times out of 10, it was in the “Two Echo X-ray,” the chopper that crashed Sunday morning. It was painted gray-and-black and sported a Mamba emblem on the side.

Deetz compared the helicopter to “a Cadillac, a limousine – it’s limo-esque.” He added that the chopper was in “fantastic” condition and had a “very good maintenance program.” He said that the crash was likely caused by the foggy weather in the L.A. area, noting that conditions Sunday morning in Van Nuys were “not good at all.” (Los Angeles Times)

ESPN reports the helicopter climbed to 2400 feet to “go above the layer” of thick fog. Moments later, it crashed into a hillside at 1400 feet. At the moment of impact, FlightRadar24 data indicates the copter was traveling at 184 mph and descending 4000 feet per minute (45 mph). A Calabasas resident said (quote) “It was very foggy. We couldn’t see anything. But we heard some sputtering, and then a boom.” (ESPN)

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