"Font Size: GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - All he wanted to do was move his helicopter across his property. Now he's just thankful he didn't lose his life in the process.
Warren Dettmer is shaken up, but luckily he wasn't seriously hurt when he crashed his helicopter yesterday evening
“I got a slight scratch. I'm a very lucky person,” says Warren Dettmer, helicopter pilot.
Dettmer, owner of Sticks and Stones has been a licensed helicopter pilot since 1995.
“I have a helipad over here. I wanted to fly and test it out,” says Dettmer.
Dettmer was having problems with his helicopter staling out. He had it serviced a month ago, and thought everything was fixed.
“We did a complete annual on it and yesterday was the first day I fired it up,” says Dettmer.
He was merely moving the helicopter from his garage to the heliport and twenty to thirty feet in the air, something went terribly wrong.
“In the course of flying it out there it died,” says Dettmer.
Dettmer says the engine stopped working mid–air.
“The problem is I started drifting towards this power pole. I either had to hit the pole or roll it on its side,” says Dettmer.
The helicopter smashed into the ground catching fire. Dettmer was able to escape and put the fire out before authorities got there. And even though Dettmer's helicopter is totaled, he says he's not ready to part with his pride and joy just yet.
“I'll probably take it apart, put it in the corner and keep it as a sad reminder,” says Dettmer.
Dettmer says his 1961 SL3 helicopter was the only one in the United States. Dettmer didn't have insurance on the copter and scheduled to get it Friday. Now he's out $30,000. And he says his flying days are over.
This was in yesterdays news.