Important – Do you know how to flag down a Helicopter?

I saw this in the Colorado news, thought I would share it. Do you know how to flag down a helicopter?

There are certain hand signals to use. Waving one hand like you are saying, “Hi” is not one of them.

I think many of us are shaking our heads at this. I’ve never thought about this as “training” we need. By instinct, if we were in distress, we would desperately wave both hands in the air to get the attention of the pilot. No way, would we want him leave without us on board.

The one hand wave. Benefit of the doubt, maybe the hiker was overly tired, could tell the pilot saw him and just expected the pilot to stop and pick him up? I find these situations maddening. WHO is paying for the helicopter to go rescue a hiker? And if the hiker is just “tired” and not really in distress, was this a true S.O.S call or a hiker feeling that he wanted a “FREE ride home?”

I’m sharing this, because I never thought about it before.

So, this is a powerful lesson. WAVE like CRAZY with TWO HANDS if you are stranded and see a helicopter flying over head. The same routine we would use if we saw a bear, right! Except with the bear, we do this to SCARE him away, with the helicopter, we are BEGGING him to land.

BY THE WAY – Anyone know what the hand signals are for crossing the street? You know, that instant where you lock eyes with the driver at a stop sign. He’s waving you to go ahead walk, you wave HIM to go ahead drive. Finally, you start to walk, but WHAT hand signal do you give to say, “Thanks, appreciate it, don’t run me over?” It gets so confusing. I’ve had that happen several times lately.

Happy hiking, camping or whatever outdoor activity you might be doing.

BE SAFE out there!

10 thoughts on “Important – Do you know how to flag down a Helicopter?

  1. The guy was probably friendly waving because he didn’t assume anyone was looking for him? Asking himself – “I’m not lost – why is there a helicopter hovering around?”
    Why don’t we interview the guy and hear what he has to say?

    Personally – I wouldn’t have to even think about it. Common sense tell me to wave my hands in the air LIKE I REALLY DO CARE… 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’d hope my body language would contribute to my plea for help. Besides waving my hands I’d be jumping up and down or running back and forth (if I could). Seems to me those are more indicative of “I need help” than any kind of hand wave. As for signals on the street, I give a quickly raised hand to anyone who waves me across the street. I’ve also had the need for hand signals on my bicycle lately. Left arm straight out to the left = left turn. Left arm bent 90 degrees at the elbow with the forearm straight up = right turn. There’s even one to indicate you’re braking, but I don’t think many people would recognize the gesture.

    Liked by 1 person

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