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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 38903
Last updated: 29 May 2017
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Date:27-AUG-1989
Time:22:04
Type:Silhouette image of generic AS50 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Aérospatiale AS 350D
Owner/operator:Eagle Helicopters
Registration: N132SH
C/n / msn: 1335
Fatalities:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Other fatalities:0
Airplane damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Category:Accident
Location:Blanchard, Bonner County, Idaho -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature:Ambulance
Departure airport:Eastport, Idaho
Destination airport:Spokane, Washington (09WA)
Investigating agency: National Transport Safety Bureau (NTSB) - United States of America
Narrative:
THE EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES (EMS/MEDEVAC) HELICOPTER WAS EN ROUTE WITH A PILOT, 2 MEDICAL PERSONNEL & A PATIENT. THE PATIENT (A FUGITIVE WITH A GUNSHOT WOUND) WAS HANDCUFFED TO THE STRETCHER. DURING THE FLIGHT, THE PILOT REPORTED A PROBLEM WITH THE PATIENT & REQUESTED POLICE ASSISTANCE DURING ARRIVAL AT THE HOSPITAL. THE PILOT THEN TRANSMITTED AN EXPLETIVE & RADAR CONTACT WAS LOST WITH THE AIRCRAFT.

WRECKAGE WAS FOUND OVER A 1 MILE AREA WITH EVIDENCE OF AN IN-FLT BREAKUP & MAIN ROTOR CONTACT WITH THE COCKPIT & TAIL CONE. INVESTIGATIONS SHOWED EVIDENCE OF SWASHPLATE BEARING SEIZURE. THE PITCH CHANGING LINK RODS & ROTATIONAL SCISSORS WERE BROKEN IN THE DIRECTION OF THE MAIN ROTOR ROTATION & CTC MARKS WERE FOUND ON THE FORWARD EARS OF THE ROTATING SWASHPLATE LUGS.

DISASSEMBLY REVEALED FAILURE OF THE INNER & OUTER RACE LOCKS & SPALLING OF THE BEARING RACES. LACK OF GREASE WAS NOTED IN THE BRG & THE BALL BEARINGS WERE DISCOLORED BLUE. WEAR MARKS ON THE BALL BEARINGS INDICATED SCUFFING; 1 BALL BEARING WAS FLUTED. THE BEARING ASSEMBLY HAD ACCRUED 1.23 HOURS OF OPERATION SINCE THE LAST 100 HR INSPECTION. LUBE REQUIRED EACH 400 HOURS, COMPANY POLICY WAS TO LUBE AT 100 HOUR INTERVALS.

CAUSE: OVERHEATING AND SEIZURE OF THE SWASHPLATE BEARING, WHICH RESULTED IN AN INFLIGHT BREAKUP OF THE HELICOPTER AND SUBSEQUENT IMPACT WITH THE GROUND.

ALL FOUR PERSONS ON BOARD KILLED:
Robert Adams, Patient
Robert Siekerman, Respiratory Therapist
Lyn Gould, Flight Nurse
Pat Varea, Pilot

Sources:

1. NTSB: http://www.ntsb.gov/aviationquery/brief.aspx?ev_id=20001213X29094&key=1
2. FAA: http://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinquiry/NNum_Results.aspx?omni=Home-N-Number&nNumberTxt=132SH
3. http://www.griffin-helicopters.co.uk/accidentdetails.aspx?accidentkey=11558
4. http://planecrashmap.com/plane/id/N132SH/
5. http://www.slackdavis.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/05/airambulancemikeslack.pdf
6. http://www.alecbuck.com/crew-memorial/


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
24-Oct-2008 10:30 ASN archive Added
30-Jun-2014 21:06 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Location, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
21-Dec-2016 19:23 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]

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