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Hovering helicopter over SoDo

by KevinFreitas
on 1/21/2008 @ 3:39pm

Anyone else see that helicopter hovering over Pacific and around 25th at about 2:45pm or so? It wasn't a news helicopter since it didn't have any ad-laden paint job and no camera bubble below the front nose. Were the TPD looking for someone? Could it be a tour related to the Sounder rail expansion through the area?

by jenyum on 1/21/2008 @ 4:56pm
I think there were some politicians planning to attend the Tacoma Dome MLK day celebration. Personal transportation, maybe?

by KevinFreitas on 1/21/2008 @ 5:00pm
Ah, highly likely. Last I saw it they were heading east from here but didn't see it descend to the Tacoma Dome or anything.

by sheilad on 1/21/2008 @ 5:04pm
They hovered over our building for awhile Tacoma Self Storage.

by tacomachickadee on 1/21/2008 @ 5:05pm
The helicopter was in the North End too ... and over King's Books. And everywhere. They circled our block several times before moving on ... our household assumes it was Google Earth or something.

by Erik on 1/21/2008 @ 5:41pm
Anyone else see that helicopter hovering over Pacific and around 25th at about 2:45pm or so?

You don't miss much in that area Kevin. SoDo is in safe hands with your vigilance.

by NEAL on 1/21/2008 @ 7:59pm
Yeah, I got some photos as if flew right over our 'hood, Kevin.

Did some googling, and posted it here:

by KevinFreitas on 1/21/2008 @ 9:43pm
Yea, that pod on the bottom is definitely some photographic equipment of some kind. Seems a little low for Google Earth but could certainly have been something someone contracted. Thanks for the info from your post NEAL.

by beerandhotdogs on 1/22/2008 @ 7:52am
No, but I did see a helicopter hovering over "Beyond Thunderdome"...

Methinks Google Earth, or 'them'.


by AP on 1/25/2008 @ 2:35pm
That same helicopter in the photo above was just hovering over North Tacoma 1/2 hour ago. It slowly headed toward downtown, all the while flying very low.

What gives?

by KevinFreitas on 1/25/2008 @ 2:38pm
Dunno -- I saw one over the I-5/Hwy 16 interchange just after noon. Certainly could be a commissioned survey of some sort. Too low for any of the satellite mapping programs online. No matter the case, you think they'd put out a notice in the paper or something about a low-flying helicopter. Seeing how we're all supposed to be scared of that kind of thing post-9/11 and all.

by Jake on 1/25/2008 @ 3:52pm
Maybe doing the "Birdseye" mapping for Google?

by intacoma on 1/26/2008 @ 7:11am
Sorry for the scare guys, I was just going for a joyride

by scott-- on 1/28/2008 @ 2:53pm
I found his N number and googled the company that rented it out. It was Tacoma Power.

by AP on 1/28/2008 @ 4:28pm
Excellent sleuthing!

by SonjaHall on 1/29/2008 @ 8:34am
On behalf of Tacoma Power, indeed we did hire a consultant to survey approximately 120 miles of our transmission line corridors. The Helicopter performing the LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) survey was in the air (periodically depending on weather) starting Friday Jan. 18 through Saturday Jan. 26.

And that's a wrap!

by KevinFreitas on 1/29/2008 @ 9:33am
Cool. Thanks for the confirm Sonja!