The pilot with the Los Angeles Fire Department maneuvered through thick smoke, devising an extraction plan with his co-pilot, in video captured on a helmet camera.
In the video, the pilot struggles to find a safe place to land in the Santa Monica Mountains. “Alright. This is rapidly becoming very ugly,” the pilot is recorded saying.
The pair realizes one of the civilians is blocked by a “giant antenna and parked vehicles,” leading the pilot to admit, “This isn’t looking good.”
He hovers and attempts a landing but is too close to the trucks on the ground. Adding to the crisis, the helicopter is running out of fuel.
Finally, they just got for it and successfully rescue three people and two dogs.
With everyone safely aboard, the heroes are off.