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NTSB Factual Report: Sula, MT

 

Location:

Sula, MT

Accident Number:

GAA19CA238

Date & Time:

04/30/20191015 MDT

Registration:

N350DL

Aircraft:

Aerospatiale AS350

Aircraft Damage:

Substantial

Defining Event:

Low altitude operation/event

Injuries:

1 None

Flight Conducted Under:

Part 137: Agricultural

The helicopter pilot reported that, after an aerial application flight, he set the bucket down in a pre-determined operations zone near a semi-truck loading hopper to be refilled. He added that another truck arrived to top off the semi-truck hopper, which emitted fertilizer dust that caused the pilot concerns for his deteriorating visibility. He advised the ground crew that he was going to move out of the operations zone temporarily.

The pilot reported that he set the bucket in the new temporary operations zone. As the skid steer approached, he eased the helicopter backward to keep the other ground equipment in his view. The pilot heard a "bang", disconnected from his long-line, and landed the helicopter without further incident.

Postaccident examination revealed that the auger from the semi-truck hopper was fully extended behind the helicopter and tail rotor blade sustained substantial damage. The pilot suspected that he backed the helicopter into the extended auger.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the helicopter that would have precluded normal operation.


Administrative Information

Investigator In Charge (IIC):

Kathryn R Benhoff

Additional Participating Persons:

Jeff Simmons; FAA; Helena, MT

Note:

This accident report documents the factual circumstances of this accident as described to the NTSB.

Investigation Docket:

http://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms/search/dockList.cfm?mKey=99359


The helicopter pilot reported that, after an aerial application flight, he set the bucket down in a pre-determined operations zone near a semi-truck loading hopper to be refilled. He added that another truck arrived to top off the semi-truck hopper, which emitted fertilizer dust that caused the pilot concerns for his deteriorating visibility. He advised the ground crew that he was going to move out of the operations zone temporarily.


The pilot reported that he set the bucket in the new temporary operations zone. As the skid steer approached, he eased the helicopter backward to keep the other ground equipment in his view. The pilot heard a "bang", disconnected from his long-line, and landed the helicopter without further incident.


Postaccident examination revealed that the auger from the semi-truck hopper was fully extended behind the helicopter and tail rotor blade sustained substantial damage. The pilot suspected that he backed the helicopter into the extended auger.


The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the helicopter that would have precluded normal operation.The helicopter pilot reported that, after an aerial application flight, he set the bucket down in a pre-determined operations zone near a semi-truck loading hopper to be refilled. He added that another truck arrived to top off the semi-truck hopper, which emitted fertilizer dust that caused the pilot concerns for his deteriorating visibility. He advised the ground crew that he was going to move out of the operations zone temporarily.


The pilot reported that he set the bucket in the new temporary operations zone. As the skid steer approached, he eased the helicopter backward to keep the other ground equipment in his view. The pilot heard a "bang", disconnected from his long-line, and landed the helicopter without further incident.


Postaccident examination revealed that the auger from the semi-truck hopper was fully extended behind the helicopter and tail rotor blade sustained substantial damage. The pilot suspected that he backed the helicopter into the extended auger.


The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the helicopter that would have precluded normal operation.

Pilot Information

Certificate:

Airline Transport; Flight Instructor; Commercial

Age:

43, Male

Airplane Rating(s):

Multi-engine Land; Multi-engine Sea; Single-engine Land; Single-engine Sea

Seat Occupied:

Right

Other Aircraft Rating(s):

Helicopter

Restraint Used:

3-point

Instrument Rating(s):

Airplane; Helicopter

Second Pilot Present:

No

Instructor Rating(s):

Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine; Helicopter; Instrument Airplane; Instrument Helicopter

Toxicology Performed:

No

Medical Certification:

Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations

Last FAA Medical Exam:

01/11/2019

Occupational Pilot:

Yes

Last Flight Review or Equivalent:

03/15/2019

Flight Time:

(Estimated) 8773 hours (Total, all aircraft), 3125 hours (Total, this make and model), 8700 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 26 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 11 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

 

 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make:

Aerospatiale

Registration:

N350DL

Model/Series:

AS350 B3

Aircraft Category:

Helicopter

Year of Manufacture:

2008

Amateur Built:

No

Airworthiness Certificate:

Normal

Serial Number:

4508

Landing Gear Type:

Skid

Seats:

6

Date/Type of Last Inspection:

04/24/2019, Annual

Certified Max Gross Wt.:

5225 lbs

Time Since Last Inspection:

 

Engines:

1 Turbo Shaft

Airframe Total Time:

1103.2 Hours as of last inspection

Engine Manufacturer:

Safran

ELT:

C126 installed, not activated

Engine Model/Series:

Arriel 2B1

Registered Owner:

Pj Helicopter Llc

Rated Power:

749 hp

Operator:

Mission Mountain Helicopters

Operating Certificate(s) Held:

Agricultural Aircraft (137); Rotorcraft External Load (133); On-demand Air Taxi (135)

 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:

Visual Conditions

Condition of Light:

Day

Observation Facility, Elevation:

 

Distance from Accident Site:

 

Observation Time:

 

Direction from Accident Site:

 

Lowest Cloud Condition:

 

Visibility

10 Miles

Lowest Ceiling:

Overcast / 10000 ft agl

Visibility (RVR):

 

Wind Speed/Gusts:

8 knots /

Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:

None / None

Wind Direction:

200°

Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:

N/A / N/A

Altimeter Setting:

 

Temperature/Dew Point:

2°C

Precipitation and Obscuration:

Blowing - Widespread Dust; No Precipitation

Departure Point:

Soula, MT

Type of Flight Plan Filed:

None

Destination:

Soula, MT

Type of Clearance:

None

Departure Time:

0700 MDT

Type of Airspace:

Class G

 

 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries:

1 None

Aircraft Damage:

Substantial

Passenger Injuries:

N/A

Aircraft Fire:

None

Ground Injuries:

N/A

Aircraft Explosion:

None

Total Injuries:

1 None

Latitude, Longitude:

45.859444, -113.968056 (est)

 





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Created 7 days ago
by jhadmin

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