U.S. Representative Jared Polis

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‘Turning Tragedy into Triumph’ celebration is a heart-warming success (photos included)

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Frisco , October 26, 2018 | comments
Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo., and Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., praised the community for its help in securing the passage of the Helicopter Fuel System Safety Act at the “Turning Tragedy into Triumph” celebration today in Frisco.

“Never give up. Never yield. Finally all newly manufactured helicopters will be required to have a safer fuel system.  It was only possible because of the tenacity and perseverance of Karen Mahany and Dave Repsher, who were determined to ensure that nobody else would have to suffer the consequences of a preventable post-crash helicopter fire. Today we pause to celebrate the fact that more emergency responders and pilots will be in helicopters equipped with the safest possible fuel systems, and we thank them for their tireless dedication and service,” said Polis.

The legislators were joined by many who were directly impacted by the 2015 Flight for Life helicopter crash, including Karen Mahany, widow of the pilot - Patrick Mahany, and Dave Repsher, a survivor of the crash. Also in attendance were representatives from the offices of Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Colo., and Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo.; North Colorado Med Evac; Red, White, and Blue Fire Protection District; Summit Fire and EMS; Summit Search and Rescue; and Thomas Davidson, Summit County Commissioner.

Photographs of the celebration can be found here:
Group photograph: https://polis.house.gov/UploadedFiles/group-001.jpg
Avalanche dogs: https://polis.house.gov/UploadedFiles/avalanche_dog-001.jpg
Polis: https://polis.house.gov/UploadedFiles/Polis-001.jpg
Repsher: https://polis.house.gov/UploadedFiles/Repsher-001.jpg

The Helicopter Fuel System Safety Act, included in the five-year Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization package, requires that all newly manufactured helicopters be built with crash-resistant fuel systems.

After the 2015 Flight for Life crash in Frisco, the National Transportation Security Board (NTSB) recommended to the FAA that crash-resistant fuel systems be a requirement for all civil rotorcrafts. Before the Helicopter Fuel System Safety Act passed into law, a loophole exempted newly-manufactured helicopters from having crash-resistant fuel systems if their model was created before 1994.

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