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Man badly hurt in fatal Flight for Life crash in Frisco gets $100M

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Posted at 2:24 PM, Feb 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-01 16:24:15-05

DENVER (AP) — An aircraft manufacturer and a medical flight operator have agreed to pay $100 million to a flight nurse who was severely burned in a Colorado helicopter crash.

Attorneys for David Repsher say Airbus Helicopters, the manufacturer, and Air Methods Corp., the operator, agreed to the payment to settle Repsher's lawsuit over the 2015 crash in the mountain town of Frisco.

The fiery crash killed the pilot, 64-year-old Patrick Mahany, and injured two nurses aboard the aircraft, including Repsher. Mahany was a decorated U.S. Army helicopter pilot in Vietnam and had flown 27 years for Flight for Life.

The Astar AS350 B3 helicopter was taking off from St. Anthony's Summit Medical Center in Frisco when it came crashing down. The helicopter never gained much altitude. 

Airbus called the crash a tragedy. Air Methods says it hopes the settlement provides closure. Both said they have made safety improvements.

Repsher's lawsuit said the helicopter wasn't equipped with a crash-resistant fuel system and that his seat wasn't sufficiently anchored. Repsher was thrown from the helicopter in the seat.

Gary Robb, one of Repsher's attorneys, says Airbus would pay $55 million and Air Methods $45 million.