General Electric Settles Helicopter Crash Suits

On August 9, 2011, General Electric Corp. settled cases brought by the families of two firefighters killed in a 2008 helicopter crash. A Sikorsky S-61 carrying 11 firefighters and two pilots crashed on August 5, 2008, while engaged in fighting a wildfire in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest. Shortly after the helicopter took off to return the firefighters to basecamp, it crashed into trees and terrain, killing nine of the passengers on board, and badly injuring the rest.

The helicopter’s turbine engine was manufactured by General Electric and the suit alleged it was defective and unsafe because of its tendency for power fluctuations, slow acceleration, and power loss.