Goodyear Blimp Crashes
June 14, 2011 by staff
Goodyear Blimp Crashes, The pilot who died Sunday when the aircraft was trapped inside the fire and crashed in Germany died a hero, saving the lives of three passengers on board, urging to jump to safety while he stayed behind. Mike Nerandzic, 53, a veteran pilot who flew the blimp over 20 years, took the Goodyear blimp to just below 7 feet off the ground and told his passengers to jump. After the three jumped to safety, the aircraft was engulfed in flames and soon rose to 150 feet due to weight loss in the cabin.
The Australia native has been called a hero after he told them to go, saying: “We’ll have an accident.”
“I could also hear the cries of the doomed pilot and the fire around him,” said a witness, according to the Daily Mail “It was terrible.”
It is speculated that the propellers of the aircraft could have beaten the hard ground during landing. Spiegel newspaper quoted press reports indicated that there was a smell of fuel on board the aircraft during the journey.
Among the passengers of a photographer with the German newspaper Bild and two RTL televisions, the Daily Mail reported.
The accident occurred on the airfield Reichelsheim near Friedberg, in central Germany. The cause has not been determined, but an investigation is ongoing.
The aircraft was owned and operated by Lightship Europe Limited. It was one of two leased by Goodyear Europe Limited Lighthouse for marketing in Europe, Goodyear said in a statement.
“Our thoughts are with family and friends of the crew, and also with our colleagues and passengers involved in aircraft tour in Germany,” Goodyear said in a statement. ‘
A former colleague told the Telegraph that Nerandzic was a talented driver and a deep passion for flying.
“He always put others first even think you realize I was doing -. It would have been just instinct,” the friend, who requested anonymity, told the newspaper. “It will be a real loss to our community.”
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