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Sacramento County sheriff helicopter makes emergency landing in field, no injuries reported

By Greta Serrin & Orko Manna

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    RANCHO CORDOVA, California (KCRA) — Two people were onboard when a Sacramento County sheriff’s helicopter made an emergency landing in a field in Rancho Cordova, authorities said.

The landing happened Sunday afternoon near the intersection of Grant Line Road and Douglas Road, according to Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District.

No one has been reported injured.

Metro Fire said the helicopter did not crash. But it’s unclear if it made a “hard landing,” authorities said.

The emergency landing happened during patrol operations, the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office said.

It’s unclear what led up to the landing.

“Could be mechanical, could be weather-related, the weather was starting to turn at the time. Obviously, it could be a combination of both,” Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Sgt. Amar Gandhi said.

The NTSB and FAA have been advised, the sheriff’s office said.

The sheriff’s office held a news conference at 5 p.m. on Sunday.

Gandhi said Sunday’s incident brought back bad memories from a deadly helicopter crash from 17 years ago. On July 13, 2005, a Sacramento sheriff’s helicopter on patrol suffered a catastrophic engine failure and went down near Lake Natoma. Joe Kievernagel and Kevin Blount both died, and Erik Henrikson was forced to retire after suffering critical injuries.

Sheriff’s officials said they are beyond thankful both deputies involved in Sunday’s emergency landing are okay.

“The fact that they walked away is in a win in all of our books,” Gandhi said. “It’s a huge sign of relief from top to bottom.”

It is unclear how long the investigation into Sunday’s emergency landing will take. The Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office says it has a reserve helicopter that will take over air operations for right now.

This is a developing story, stay with KCRA 3 for the latest.

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