News & Comment

Low Viz Helicopter CFIT Accident, Alaska

Posted by on 12:05 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Design & Certification, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Culture, Safety Management

Low Viz Helicopter CFIT Accident, Alaska On 6 May  2016, Airbus Helicopters AS350B2 N94TH, operated by TEMSCO Helicopters, collided with snow-covered mountainous terrain about 4 miles southeast of Skagway, Alaska in a Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT). The helicopter had departed from a remote landing site, surrounded by mountains, on the Denver Glacier on a visual flight rules (VFR) flight with internal cargo.  Instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) were however reported on the Denver Glacier at the time.  The non-instrument-rated...

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Helicopter Engine Unapproved Repair Leads to Forced Landing Damage

Posted by on 9:45 am in Accidents & Incidents, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management, Special Mission Aircraft

Helicopter Engine Unapproved Repair Leads to Forced Landing Damage On 3 June 2016, Bell 407 N4999, operated as an air ambulance by PHI‘s Air Medical division for Welmont Hospital, was damaged when it landed hard during in a forced landing into a parking lot near Mountain City, Tennessee.   The impact spread the skids and resulted in substantial damage. The Rolls-Royce 250-C47B powered helicopter had suffered a partial loss of engine power during the initial climb after collecting a patient. The pilot suffered minor injuries and the two...

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HEMS A109S Night Loss of Control Inflight

Posted by on 9:08 am in Accidents & Incidents, FDM / Data Recorders, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, Safety Management, Special Mission Aircraft

HEMS A109S Night Loss of Control Inflight (LOC-I) On 17 September 2016 a Leonardo  AW109S Grand air ambulance helicopter, N91NM, operated by North Memorial Air Care, crashed near Chandler Field Airport (AXN), Alexandria, Minnesota. The pilot and both medical personnel on board were seriously injured and the helicopter was destroyed in yet another night HEMS accident in the US. The Accident Flight The helicopter was positioning from Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport (BRD), at night under instrument flight rules (IFR), departing at 01:37 local...

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Eclipse 500 Landing Gear Production Defect

Posted by on 3:57 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Business Aviation, Fixed Wing, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management

Eclipse 500 Landing Gear Production Defect On 11 June 2015, Eclipse Aviation (now part of ONE Aviation) EA500 N508JA, operated by Memly Aviation, experienced left main landing gear (MLG) collapse while taxiing for departure at Sacramento Executive Airport, California. The three persons onboard were uninjured but there was substantial damage to the left wing. The left MLG trunnion (TSN 1,275 hours and  CSN 1,492 cycles) had broken near the rear attachment point and the MLG had penetrated through the wing. The US National Transportation Safety...

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Torched Tennessee Tour Trip (B206L N16760)

Posted by on 10:34 am in Accidents & Incidents, Helicopters, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management

Torched Tennessee Tour Trip (B206L N16760) On 4 April 2016 Bell 206L N16760 suffered an engine power loss and crashed near Pigeon Forge, TN.  The helicopter was operated by Smoky Mountain Helicopters as a Part 91 local air tour flight.  In such cases the operator is approved by the FAA  to conduct air tours within 25 statute miles of the departure airport under Part 91.147, a rather basic requirement with few obligations compared to Part 135 (Air Taxi). There was no distress call.  According to the US National Transportation Safety Board...

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Crossed Cables: Colgan Air B1900D N240CJ Maintenance Error

Posted by on 6:34 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Design & Certification, Fixed Wing, Human Factors / Performance, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management

Crossed Cables: Colgan Air B1900D N240CJ Maintenance Error On 26 August 2003, Beechcraft 1900D, N240CJ, operated by Colgan Air (operated for US Airways Express) crashed shortly after take off on a post-maintenance ferry flight from Barnstable Municipal Airport, Hyannis, Massachusetts, to Albany International Airport, New York. The Accident Flight During the takeoff roll, the pitch trim system began to move in the downward direction. The initial movement from 1.5º to 3º nose down was consistent with an electric pitch trim motor input. Four...

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Inappropriate Autorotation Training

Posted by on 3:44 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, Safety Management, Special Mission Aircraft

Inappropriate Autorotation Training On 24 October 2015 Airbus Helicopters AS350B3 N911WL of the Placer County Sheriff’s Department landed hard during a practice autorotation near Folsom, California.  The crew of 3 were uninjured but the helicopter was substantially damaged. In their safety investigation report the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) explain that: The purpose of the public helicopter flight was to perform a patrol mission with a tactical flight officer onboard, while the flight instructor also trained the...

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Investigation into Jet Airways B777 VT-JEK Serious Incident at Heathrow

Posted by on 10:04 am in Accidents & Incidents, Airfields / Heliports / Helidecks, Fixed Wing, Human Factors / Performance, Safety Management

Investigation into Jet Airways B777 VT-JEK Serious Incident at Heathrow On 30 August 2016  Jet Airways Boeing  B777-300 VT-JEK departed from Runway 27L at London Heathrow bound for Mumbai with 231 passengers and 15 crew on board. The aircraft departed from intersection departure S4E rather than using the full length of the runway and radio altimeter data showed the aircraft a height above ground of 16 feet at the end of the runway and at 112 feet at the airport perimeter road. The investigation was delegated by the UK Air Accidents...

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In-Flight Flying Control Failure: Indonesian Sikorsky S-76C+ PK-FUP

Posted by on 10:42 pm in Accidents & Incidents, Design & Certification, Helicopters, Human Factors / Performance, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Oil & Gas / IOGP / Energy, Safety Management

In-Flight Flying Control Failure: Indonesian Sikorsky S-76C+ PK-FUP Sikorsky S-76C+ helicopter PK-FUP (MSN 760582), operated by Hevilift Aviation Indonesia, crashed on 21 March 2015. The final report of Indonesian safety investigators confirms that control was lost after a main rotor servo push rod connection failed after a loss of torque and progressive wear to the point of separation from the rod end. History of the Flight PK-FUP was conducting a daylight pipeline inspection for Total E&P Indonesia from Sepinggan Airport, via the Handil...

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Improvised Troubleshooting After Cascading A330 Avionics Problems

Posted by on 8:56 am in Accidents & Incidents, Design & Certification, Fixed Wing, Human Factors / Performance, Maintenance / Continuing Airworthiness / CAMOs, Safety Management

Improvised Troubleshooting After Cascading A330 Avionics Problems On 26 December 2014 XL Airways Airbus A330-243 F-GRSQ suffered a cascading series of failures over the Mediterranean on a flight from Reunion to Marseilles.  The aircraft was at FL380, 280nm south of Athens, when the crew lost all three Inertial Reference Systems (IRS).  This resulted in a decision to divert to Athens, where the aircraft landed safely. History of the Flight The safety investigation body the BEA  say in their report (issued in French only), that shortly after...

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