Hiker spun out of control in helicopter rescue gets $450,000 in settlement

The woman filed a $2M claim against the city of Phoenix in 2019, citing physical, emotional and psychological injuries suffered from the incident


Helena Wegner
The Charlotte Observer

PHOENIX — An injured hiker spun out of control while she was airlifted off of an Arizona mountain. Now she gets $450,000, officials told multiple media outlets.

Katalin Metro, then 74, was hiking Piestewa Peak in 2019 when she fell and required assistance getting off the trail, KPNX reported.

Metro was placed in a rescue basket and airlifted into a helicopter by firefighters. But the cable line meant to keep the basket from spinning broke during the rescue and sent her into an uncontrollable spin, KNXV-TV reported.

“We do mountain rescues all of the time, but this particular one gathered quite a bit of attention because during the rescue, she was packaged on a hoist in a Stokes basket and she started to spin,” Assistant Fire Chief Shelly Jamison told the news outlet in 2019.

A TV news station caught it all on camera.

The woman and her husband filed a $2 million notice of claim against the city of Phoenix in 2019 for the physical, emotional and psychological injuries she suffered from the incident, The Arizona Republic reported. A civil lawsuit was filed the next year in Maricopa County Superior Court.

The Phoenix City Council unanimously voted to settle the lawsuit for $450,000 on Wednesday, Dec. 1, the news outlet reported.

“There are multiple reasons to settle a case. In this situation, the Metros and the City were able to come to an agreement of this disputed claim. The City denies any wrongdoing or liability,” the city of Phoenix said in an emailed statement to McClatchy News.

©2021 The Charlotte Observer. Visit charlotteobserver.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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