A woman injured in a serious chopper crash with the pilot who was killed along with little Amber Millar in a horror incident in Broome three years ago has launched legal action against his aviation company. Chelsea Cortese was a passenger on board a helicopter operated by Troy Thomas when it crashed into the ocean and sank off the coast of the Kimberley tourist spot in July 2019 – less than a year before the fatal crash that claimed his life and the 12-year-old Perth schoolgirl. Thomas was the pilot of the chopper that crashed almost immediately after take-off killing him, Amber and seriously injuring his daughter and Maddison Down, an education assistant who knew both girls. An investigation into the July 2020 crash revealed Thomas carried out “a high‑power towering take-off from a confined area” without hovering first to check if there was still vibration in the tail rotor pedals that had been felt during two previous flights. The Australian Transport Safety Bureau also found Thomas had “demonstrated acts of non-compliance with multiple aviation safety regulations” and had a “high-risk appetite” with a willingness to expose others to it. In its investigation, the ATSB also uncovered there was a “history of unreported accidents and incidents within the registered operator’s Robinson R44 fleet” which included “tail rotor strikes and total loss of a helicopter resulting in serious injury”. In total, the ATSB found Thomas failed to report six incidents between September 2016 and November 2019. According to The Australian, Ms Cortese is suing Avanova Pty Ltd – which owned and operated Thomas’ helicopter fleet – for damages over injuries she suffered in the 2019 unreported crash. The 24-year-old was a passenger in Thomas’ Robinson R44 - registered VH-ZGY – which was being operated by him and another pilot Bryce McGlashan. The Australian reported as Thomas tried to takeoff from his catamaran, High Calibre, the helicopter yawed left, tipped forwards and rolled to the right. The main rotor blades struck the starboard side of the vessel. The helicopter then hit the water and sank. Mr McGlashan sustained serious physical injuries and Thomas, who was unlicensed at the time, suffered severe bruising and a sore neck. Ms Cortese, who was aged 20 at the time, suffered severe injuries after almost drowning. According to The Australian, Ms Cortese’s statement of claim states that VH-ZGY crashed because it was still tethered to High Calibre when Thomas tried to take off from the helipad. She claims Avanova Pty Ltd was negligent when it attempted to take off while still strapped to the catamaran and “failed to perform adequate pre-flight checks to ensure that the helicopter was not strapped to High Calibre before taking off and failed to exercise sufficient care and skill in the operation of the helicopter to prevent the accident.” Ms Cortese also claims she suffered severe injuries as a result of the incident and still requires medical treatment. Ms Cortese is suing Avanova for damages, interest and costs. The matter is expected to proceed to trial next year.