Helicopter makes hard landing at Honolulu Airport - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Helicopter makes hard landing at Honolulu Airport

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - There were no major injuries after a private helicopter piloted by an eye doctor made a hard landing at Honolulu International Airport on Friday afternoon.

According to investigators, ophthalmologist and founder of Hawaiian Eye Center John Corboy had taken two teenagers on a day trip to Molokai. Corboy has a residence on the island and flies the helicopter between Honolulu and Molokai regularly.

Dominic Mills-Patrick, 17, and Nic Politsch, 16, who are the sons of close friends of Corboy, said the trip was uneventful until the helicopter was about to land. The group was returning from the Friendly Isle aboard Corboy's Robinson R-44 helicopter, which can carry a pilot and three passengers.

"As we came to land, there was a gust of wind I guess, and we started to shift to the right and we started to go up," said Mills-Patrick. "And then Dr. Corboy, he started to say a few things like... I could tell something was wrong."

Politsch said there was a tank of fuel close to where the helicopter landed hard and then ended up on its side.

On his thoughts which raced through his head in those moments: "I hope we survive this. I can't believe this is happening. And I hope we don't hit the fuel tank," Politsch said.

"After spinning a few times he put us down, and I guess he put us down a little too hard, but he landed us safely," said Mills-Patrick.

Another helicopter pilot nearby was able to pull Corboy, Politsch and Mills-Patrick out of the aircraft. 

Politsch suffered a cut to his leg. Mills-Patrick was not hurt, and Dr. Corboy also had a few cuts. The doctor declined comment.

An investigation is underway by the FAA.

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