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NTSB Final Report: Howe, ID

Location:

Howe, Idaho

Accident Number:

WPR22LA132

Date & Time:

March 22, 2022, 11:00 Local

Registration:

N44DQ

Aircraft:                                  ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY R44 II

Aircraft Damage:            Substantial

Defining Event:                      Loss of control in flight                       Injuries:                                                2 Minor, 1 None

Flight Conducted Under:       Part 91: General aviation - Personal

Analysis

The pilot of the helicopter reported that, while flying in mountainous terrain, he decided to land on top of a ridge for a rest break. The pilot performed a circling reconnaissance of the area before he began his descent to his intended landing spot. During the descent, the pilot felt a wind gust from behind, then the rotor rpm began to decay, and the low rotor rpm light illuminated along with the aural warning horn.

The pilot attempted to reestablish power without success as the helicopter continued to descend. To avoid going over the ridge, the pilot intentionally lowered the helicopter to the ground and rolled the helicopter onto its right side. The helicopter sustained substantial damage to the fuselage and tail boom. The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the helicopter that would have precluded normal operation.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot’s failure to maintain adequate rotor rpm while descending with a gusting tailwind condition, which resulted in a loss of helicopter control.

Findings

Personnel issues -  Aircraft control - Pilot

Aircraft Environmental issues - Descent/approach/glide path - Not attained/maintained Tailwind - Effect on equipment


Factual Information

History of Flight

Approach - Loss of control in flight (Defining event)

Landing - Hard landing

Pilot Information

Certificate:

Private

Age:

60,Male

Airplane Rating(s):

Single-engine land

Seat Occupied:

Right

Other Aircraft Rating(s):

Helicopter

Restraint Used:

5-point

Instrument Rating(s):

Airplane

Second Pilot Present:

No

Instructor Rating(s):

None

Toxicology Performed:

 

Medical Certification:

Class 3 With waivers/limitations

Last FAA Medical Exam:

May 12, 2020

Occupational Pilot:

No

Last Flight Review or Equivalent:

April 24, 2021

Flight Time:

1863 hours (Total, all aircraft), 600 hours (Total, this make and model), 1863 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft)

Passenger Information

Certificate:

 

Age:

Female

Airplane Rating(s):

 

Seat Occupied:

Left

Other Aircraft Rating(s):

 

Restraint Used:

5-point

Instrument Rating(s):

 

Second Pilot Present:

No

Instructor Rating(s):

 

Toxicology Performed:

 

Medical Certification:

 

Last FAA Medical Exam:

 

Occupational Pilot:

No

Last Flight Review or Equivalent:

 

Flight Time:

Passenger Information

Certificate:

 

Age:

Male

Airplane Rating(s):

 

Seat Occupied:

Left

Other Aircraft Rating(s):

 

Restraint Used:

Lap only

Instrument Rating(s):

 

Second Pilot Present:

No

Instructor Rating(s):

 

Toxicology Performed:

 

Medical Certification:

 

Last FAA Medical Exam:

 

Occupational Pilot:

No

Last Flight Review or Equivalent:

 

Flight Time:

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make:

ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY

Registration:

N44DQ

Model/Series:

R44 II

Aircraft Category:

Helicopter

Year of Manufacture:

2005

Amateur Built:

 

Airworthiness Certificate:

Normal

Serial Number:

10821

Landing Gear Type:

Skid

Seats:

4

Date/Type of Last Inspection:

Unknown

Certified Max Gross Wt.:

2500 lbs

Time Since Last Inspection:

 

Engines:

1 Reciprocating

Airframe Total Time:

 

Engine Manufacturer:

Lycoming

ELT:

 

Engine Model/Series:

IO 540-AE1A5

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:

Day

Observation Facility, Elevation:

KRXE,4858 ft msl

Distance from Accident Site:

54 Nautical Miles

Observation Time:

Direction from Accident Site:

107°

Lowest Cloud Condition:

Visibility

10 miles

Lowest Ceiling:

Overcast / 6000 ft AGL

Visibility (RVR):

 

Wind Speed/Gusts:

/                                                   Turbulence Type

Forecast/Actual:

/ Terrain-Induced

Wind Direction:

Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:

/ Severe

Altimeter Setting:

30.4 inches Hg

Temperature/Dew Point:

1°C / -4°C

Precipitation and Obscuration:

No Obscuration; No Precipitation

 

Departure Point:

Grace, ID (RXE)

Type of Flight Plan Filed:

None

Destination:

Rexburg, ID (RXE)

Type of Clearance:

None

Departure Time:

08:15 Local

Type of Airspace:

Class G

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries:

1 None

Aircraft Damage:

Substantial

Passenger Injuries:

2 Minor

Aircraft Fire:

None

Ground Injuries:

 

Aircraft Explosion:

None

Total Injuries:

2 Minor, 1 None

Latitude, Longitude:

44.1042,-113.0019

Administrative Information

Investigator In Charge (IIC):

Rho, Paul

 

Additional Participating Persons:

Howard Dunn; FAA FSDO; Boise, ID

 

Original Publish Date:

November 3, 2022                                                                                    Investigation Class:

4

Note:

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

 

Investigation Docket:

https://data.ntsb.gov/Docket?ProjectID=104844

 





Created 93 days ago
by Admin

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