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Josh Bischof

Assistant Chief

On Sunday, August 6, 2023, two firefighting helicopters, a Sikorsky S-64E and a Bell 407, collided in Cabazon, California, while battling the Broadway Wildland Fire, a vegetation fire sparked by a nearby structure fire. While the Sikorsky S-64E helicopter was able to land safely, the Bell 407 crashed. All three occupants of this helicopter, Assistant Chief Josh Bischof, Captain Timothy “Tim” Rodriguez, and Contract Pilot Tony Sousa were killed. The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash.

Fatality status is provisional and may change as USFA contacts State Fire Marshals to verify fatality incident information.

Department information

California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE)
715 P ST
Sacramento, California 95814

Chief: Joe Tyler

Age: 46
Rank: Assistant Chief
Classification: Career
Incident date: August 6, 2023 7:00 p.m.
Date of death: August 6, 2023
Cause of fatal injury: Vehicle Collision - Includes Aircraft
Nature of fatal injury: Trauma
Activity type: Riding Vehicle/Apparatus
Emergency duty: Yes
Duty type: On-Scene Fire
Fixed property use: Vacant Property

Last updated: August 08, 2023