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NTSB Final Report: New Roads, Louisiana

Location:

New Roads, Louisiana

Accident Number:

CEN21LA385

Date & Time:

August 20, 2021, 03:40 Local

Registration:

N744RB

Aircraft:                             ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY R44 II

Aircraft Damage:          Unknown

Defining Event:                  Loss of engine power (total)                                Injuries:                                          1 None

Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal

Analysis

The pilot was conducting a night cross country flight in his single-engine helicopter to evaluate the progress of some construction projects. As he approached the landing area, he noticed some loose construction debris, so he flew past the site and turned around to approach from the opposite direction. Shortly thereafter, the engine began losing power. Unable to maintain level flight he conducted an emergency landing to a river. By the time he was rescued, about 11 hours after the accident, the helicopter had sunk and was not located despite an extensive search by local law enforcement. Given that the wreckage was not recovered, an examination of the engine to determine a reason for the loss of power could not be performed.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: A loss of engine power for reasons that could not be determined due to a lack of available evidence.

Findings

Aircraft                                         (general) - Unknown/Not determined

Factual Information

History of Flight

Maneuvering-low-alt flying           Loss of engine power (total) (Defining event)

Pilot Information

Certificate:

Private

Age:

62,Male

Airplane Rating(s):

None

Seat Occupied:

Unknown

Other Aircraft Rating(s):

Helicopter

Restraint Used:

 

Instrument Rating(s):

None

Second Pilot Present:

 

Instructor Rating(s):

None

Toxicology Performed:

 

Medical Certification:

BasicMed

Last FAA Medical Exam:

 

Occupational Pilot:

No

Last Flight Review or Equivalent:

 

Flight Time:

(Estimated)

 

 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make:

ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY

Registration:

N744RB

Model/Series:

R44 II

Aircraft Category:

Helicopter

Year of Manufacture:

 

Amateur Built:

 

Airworthiness Certificate:

Normal

Serial Number:

14390

Landing Gear Type:

Skid

Seats:

4

Date/Type of Last Inspection:

 

Certified Max Gross Wt.:

 

Time Since Last Inspection:

 

Engines:

1

Airframe Total Time:

 

Engine Manufacturer:

 

ELT:

 

Engine Model/Series:

 

Registered Owner:

 

Rated Power:

 

Operator:

On file

Operating Certificate(s) Held:

None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:

Visual (VMC)

Condition of Light:

Night

Observation Facility, Elevation:

KHZR,40 ft msl

Distance from Accident Site:

6 Nautical Miles

Observation Time:

04:15 Local

Direction from Accident Site:

266°

Lowest Cloud Condition:

Clear

Visibility

10 miles

Lowest Ceiling:

None

Visibility (RVR):

 

Wind Speed/Gusts:

/                                           Turbulence Type

Forecast/Actual:

/

Wind Direction:

Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:

/

Altimeter Setting:

29.97 inches Hg

Temperature/Dew Point:

24°C / 24°C

Precipitation and Obscuration:

No Obscuration; No Precipitation

 

Departure Point:

Lafayette, LA (KLFT)

Type of Flight Plan Filed:

None

Destination:

Type of Clearance:

None

Departure Time:

03:40 Local

Type of Airspace:

 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries:

1 None

Aircraft Damage:

Unknown

Passenger Injuries:

 

Aircraft Fire:

None

Ground Injuries:

 

Aircraft Explosion:

None

Total Injuries:

1 None

Latitude, Longitude:

30.72554,-91.353989(est)

Administrative Information

Investigator In Charge (IIC):

Williams, David

 

Additional Participating Persons:

Michael Wilson; Federal Aviation Administration; Baton rouge, LA

 

Original Publish Date:

November 16, 2021                                                           Investigation Class:

4

Note:

The NTSB did not travel to the scene of this accident.

 

Investigation Docket:

https://data.ntsb.gov/Docket?ProjectID=103751