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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 140476
Last updated: 26 September 2017
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Date:19-APR-1998
Time:20:45
Type:Silhouette image of generic R44 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Robinson R44
Owner/operator:Heli-Air Ltd
Registration: G-POWE
C/n / msn: 0261
Fatalities:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Other fatalities:0
Airplane damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Category:Accident
Location:1/2 miles from Gumley, near Market Harborough, Leicestershire -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Nature:Private
Departure airport:Leicester Airport (EGBG) Stoughton, Leicestershire
Destination airport:Leicester Airport (EGBG) Stoughton, Leicestershire
Investigating agency: AAIB
Narrative:
Written off (damaged beyond repair) 19 April 1998 when crashed 1/2 mile from Gumley, near Market Harborough, Leicestershire, killing all four persons on board. A contemporary BBC report named the four killed as "Andrew Byrne, 36, wife Helen Linhart, 31, and her sister Katie, 26, and pilot James Coulter, 36". According to the following extract from the official AAIB report into the accident:

"The pilot, who had a night rating, rented the helicopter at midday and promised to return it before midnight. He flew three short sectors before picking up three friends for a pre-planned flight. He flew them to a local inn for a meal and then, after about two hours, took-off in darkness.

The weather had deteriorated, as forecast, during the time they were in the inn and it was raining when they took-off. A witness saw the helicopter and then heard a sound of a crash. He raised the alarm and a Police helicopter based 9 km from the accident was alerted but the weather was too poor for an air search.

A ground search continued throughout the night but the wreckage was not sighted until daylight. No evidence was found of any mechanical malfunction and the helicopter had fuel and was intact on impact. Conditions were conducive to carburettor icing; carburettor heating was selected on.

Disorientation due to poor weather may have been accentuated by need to apply carburettor heating and possible misting of windscreen".

The AAIB report confirms that G-POWE as "destroyed". As a result, the registration G-POWE was cancelled by the CAA on 10 August 1998 as "destroyed"

Sources:

1. AAIB: http://www.aaib.gov.uk/publications/bulletins/october_1998/robinson_502209.cfm
2. CAA: http://www.caa.co.uk/application.aspx?catid=60&pagetype=65&appid=1&mode=reg&fullregmark=POWE
3. http://www.griffin-helicopters.co.uk/accidentdetails.asp?accidentkey=1832
4. http://coptercrazy.brinkster.net/search/r44show.asp?start=251&count=50
5. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/leicestershire/4638373.stm
6. http://www.harboroughmail.co.uk/news/mail-news/helicopter-tragedy-family-breaks-seven-year-silence-1-1520011
7. http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200001/cmhansrd/vo010508/halltext/10508h01.htm
8. http://www.lutterworthmail.co.uk/news/mail-news/new-inquest-into-helicopter-tragedy-1-1519994


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
18-Dec-2011 17:18 Dr. John Smith Added
19-Mar-2015 02:38 Dr. John Smith Updated [Location, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description