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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 133573
Last updated: 23 August 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic B06 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Bell 206B-2 JetRanger II
Owner/operator:Houston Helicopters
Registration: N59396
C/n / msn: 1168
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Anahuac, TX -   United States of America
Phase: Take off
Nature:External load operation
Departure airport:T29
Destination airport:
Investigating agency: NTSB
On September 25, 1997, at 1330 central daylight time, a Bell 206B2 helicopter, N59396, was destroyed following a loss of control while on initial takeoff climb near Anahuac, Texas. The commercial pilot, sole occupant of the helicopter, sustained serious injuries. The helicopter, owned and operated by Houston Helicopters Inc., of Pearland, Texas, was being operated under Title 14 CFR Part 133, at the time of the accident. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local external load flight for which a company flight plan was filed. The helicopter was taking off after filling the water bucket when the accident occurred.

The helicopter was supporting seismic operations being conducted by Grant Geophysical, Inc., near the Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge. The helicopter was summoned to deliver a bucket of water to support drilling operations. A member of the drilling crew reported observing the helicopter flying in the direction of the pond being utilized to extract the water. When the helicopter failed to return with the water bucket, the drilling crew became concerned and a search for the helicopter was initiated.

The mangled wreckage of the helicopter was located in a marshy area approximately 100 feet west of a pond known as Oyster Bay Bayou. The helicopter came to rest on its right side on a northerly heading. Physical evidence at the accident site indicate that the helicopter impacted the terrain at a high rate of descend with very low forward airspeed. There were no reported eyewitnesses to the accident.

A 7-foot diameter ground impression was found in the soft marshy area was nearly circular in shape. The ground impression corresponded to the collapsible water bucket that was found approximately 200 feet to the west of the resting place of the main wreckage. The 3 to 5 foot tall grass on the southern portion of the hole made by the water bucket was found pushed or laid back in a southerly direction. The 100 gallon water "Bambi" bucket, which was found configured to carry 79 gallons of water, was attached to the 100 foot long cable. The cable was found laying near the helicopter's external hook.

Deep wear impressions corresponding to the steel cable being utilized in conjunction with the external load were found aft of the toe of the left skid tube, at the attaching point where it attaches to the crosstube assembly. No similar impressions were found on the other skid or cross tube assemblies.

The helicopter was not equipped with any device to prevent the external load cable from becoming entangled with the helicopter's skid landing gear.

Examination of the helicopter at the accident site by FAA inspectors revealed that the cabin, fuselage, tailboom, and main rotor system of the helicopter were structurally damaged. The right forward section of the fuselage separated from the airframe. Witness marks found on the collective controls indicate that the collective was in the full up position at the time of the impact. The tail boom of the helicopter was bent upwards. The main mast was bent 20 to 30 degrees at the static point. Both main rotor blades were severely damaged. The leading edges of neither tail rotor blades sustained any significant impact damage. The tail rotor assembly and the 90 degree gear box remained attached to the tailboom.

A conditional release was issued to recover and transport the wreckage of the helicopter from the accident site to a secured location for further examination and testing. A wreckage layout and examination was performed at the operator's maintenance facility under the supervision of FAA inspectors. The maintenance records for the helicopter were concurrently reviewed. The review of airframe and engine records by the FAA inspector did not reveal any anomalies or uncorrected maintenance defects prior to the flight. The aircraft was found to be in compliance with all applicable airworthiness directives.

The hydraulic pump, the two cyclic servos, the collective servo, the collective fitting


NTSB id 20001208X08857

Revision history:

21-Dec-2016 19:26 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]

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