Helicopter rotor decapitates man at Florida airport: Fire official

Author: CBS News
Helicopter sits in Brooksville-Tampa Bay Regional Airport in Brooksville, Florida after, authorities say, one of its blades decapitated a maintenance worker on January 10, 2019

A maintenance man was decapitated by the rotor of a helicopter at the Brooksville-Tampa Bay Regional Airport in Brooksville, Florida, a Hernando County Fire Rescue official told CBS Tampa affiliate WTSP-TV. The Federal Aviation Administration said the blade struck Salvatore Disi, 62, of Hudson, Florida, who was doing maintenance work on the aircraft Thursday afternoon.

According to the Hernando County Sheriff’s Office, a caller said he and another person were using a power cart to jump-start the copter when it jerked up and came down quickly. That’s when Disi was struck by one of the main rotor blades. He died instantly.

Deputies said no foul play was suspected.

The helicopter is used by Dr. Alfred Bonati, the Sheriff’s Office said. Bonati is a well-known orthopedic surgeon and founder and CEO of the Bonati Spine Institute, in Hudson.

The Medical Examiner’s Office in Leesburg, Fla. removed the body from the scene.

Sheriff Al Nienhuis said on Facebook that he knew Disi.

“The deceased (Sal Disi) was an acquaintance of my family for many years,” he wrote. “He was a good man. This is so tragic.”

The incident is still being investigated.

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