PORT ALLEN, Hawaii – Wind up to 60 mph prevented helicopters from lowering rescue workers to the wreckage of a tour helicopter that crashed in a remote mountainous area of Kauai (search).
County officials said the military was asked for a more powerful helicopter so that another attempt could be made Monday to reach the Bell 206B (search) helicopter that crashed Friday with five people on board.
"This wreckage is located at about 2,700 feet on about a 60-degree slope," fire department battalion chief Bob Kaden said Sunday. "So we want to be safe."
Officials said they did not know whether there were survivors, but said the aircraft burst into flames after crashing into a ridge. On board were the pilot, a 36-year-old man, a 30-year-old woman and a German couple, officials said. Their names have not been released.
The helicopter, which belonged to Bali Hai Helicopter Tours (search), was reported missing Friday after failing to return from a tour on time, officials said. A crew on a Coast Guard helicopter spotted the crash site Saturday.
The pilot formerly flew with India's air force and had flown tours for two months, said Coast Guard Lt. Danny Shaw. The helicopter was about 26 years old, according to the National Transportation Safety Board (search).
In July 2003, five people were killed when a tour helicopter operated by a different company crashed in central Kauai.