Helipad flight path opens in Crosby

Above John Strawbridge of a Commissioner of HCESD#5 talks at right about instrumentation with Jeff Cobb

CROSBY – Although it has yet to be used, a flight-path to helipad has been put into service here last Saturday, Sept. 12 behind Crosby Volunteer Fire Station #1 on US 90 just after it was finalized.

The helipad is important especially to this area because frequently previously, requests by ambulance crews for helicopter air lifts by Life Flight had to be turned down due to low visibility. Dayton, Liberty, Crosby and Huffman lack radar weather stations to give them a complete picture. Typically they either are grounded because of a low ceiling or make attempts and turn back because the low fog bank near FM 1942 hits abruptly. The theory is the cool canopy line from the trees and moist grass farms mix with the warm air of the bay in Baytown causing this to be a routine weather pattern in the district especially in fall and spring. The Life Flight system estimates they will get 60% of the turned down flight back with this GPS sight because they can land in 1/4 mile viability and a 300 foot ceiling. The new Flight Path gives a GPS take off to landing at the heliport instrument guidance.

The entire system goes back to a conversation between Christy Graves Coordinator of Emergency Medical Services and Jeff Cobb a Life Flight Paramedic for Hermann Memorial at the Texas State EMS Conference a few years ago. Graves had been turned down for 9 much needed Ambulance flights in 4 months. They were networking to determine how to handle the problem of poor weather detection systems in the area.

Other EMS providers nearby may also use the helipad that is owned by the taxpayers of Crosby through the two Emergency Service district tax entities.

Randy Foster of HCESD 80, submitted the paperwork for the helipad. He also provided the particulars of the helipad at the opening of the dedication closing with, “We look forward to many safe landings here.”

Graves opened with a prayer.

Two Lifeflight calls in clear conditions were called into Crosby within an hour the night before landing at different locations than the helipad.

One on the night before two locations one on FM 2100 and one on US 90 requred Life Flight Helicopters in good weather conditions. Had there been gale force winds or fog the helipad would have been used.