Mosquito control suspends helicopter flights in Twin Cities - KMSP-TV

Mosquito control suspends helicopter flights after Maplewood crash

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The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District has suspended helicopter operations following Wednesday morning's crash in Maplewood, Minn. that claimed the life of pilot Mike Kramer.

Kramer, of St. Charles, Minn., was flying to a wetland habitat to drop dry granules used to prevent mosquitoes from emerging.

Scott's Helicopter Services, which owned the helicopter involved in the crash, released the following statement: "The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District has worked with Scotts Helicopter Service for more than 20 years. Our thoughts and prayers are, of course, with Mr. Kramer's, family, friends and colleagues."

MMCD has operates a fleet of seven helicopters, and they have already treated about 100,000 acres this year. Jim Stark of MMCD told FOX 9 News accidents like these are extremely rare.

"They've got an exemplary safety record. We've had four incidents that I'm aware of over the last 25 years -- the previous ones I would describe as more of a forced landing," he said. "This is certainly the most significant of the ones I'm aware of."

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the cause of the crash, which happened at 8:13 a.m. on the 2700 block of 7th Street.

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