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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 181538
Last updated: 24 September 2021
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Time:10:55 LT
Type:Silhouette image of generic AS50 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Aťrospatiale AS 350BA Ecureuil
Owner/operator:Fox and Franz Heli Services
Registration: ZK-HKU
MSN: 1132
Fatalities:Fatalities: 7 / Occupants: 7
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Fox Glacier NE of Karangarua, Westland -   New Zealand
Phase: Take off
Nature:Passenger - Non-Scheduled/charter/Air Taxi
Departure airport:near Fox Glacier town
Destination airport:near Fox Glacier town
Investigating agency: TAIC New Zealand
The aircraft impacted into a crevasse on Fox Glacier. The helicopter was destroyed and the seven occupants (one pilot and 6 tourists) received fatal injuries. Weather has been a factor in the area and delayed the search.
The aircraft crashed nea the landing spot "The Chancelor".

The Commission also found that the weather conditions on the day were unstable and unsuitable for conducting a scenic flight. The localised weather conditions in the area were very likely to have been frequently below the minimum criteria required by the Civil Aviation Rules.

It is very likely that when the helicopter took off from Chancellor Shelf and descended down the valley, the pilotís perception of the helicopterís height above the terrain was affected by one or more of the following conditions:
- cloud
- precipitation
- flat light conditions
- condensation on the helicopterís front windscreen.

The Commission found that the pilot had not been properly trained and did not have the appropriate level of experience expected under the operatorís categorisation scheme for a senior pilot in this type of operation. The operatorís system for training its pilots was ill-defined and did not comply fully with the Civil Aviation Rules.

The operatorís training system did not have sufficient oversight by the designated senior persons, and this was a factor that allowed the pilot to be assigned roles and responsibilities without the proper training and experience.

The Commission found that the Civil Aviation Authority had identified significant non-compliance issues with the operatorís training system and managerial oversight that had warranted intervention long before this accident occurred.

The Commission identified two safety issues:
- the operatorís system for training its pilots did not comply fully with the requirements of the Civil Aviation Rules or the operatorís approved operations specifications, and did not adequately prepare the pilot for the role and responsibilities required for flight operations that day
- the operator had been allowed to continue providing helicopter air operations with little or no intervention from the Civil Aviation Authority, in spite of the Authority having identified significant non-compliances with the operatorís training system and managerial oversight.


Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: TAIC New Zealand
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 3 years and 6 months
Download report: Final report
Other occurrences involving this aircraft

10 Feb 2000 ZK-HKV Marine Helicopters Ltd. 1 Tapora, Northland w/o



Revision history:

21-Nov-2015 04:34 Geno Added
21-Nov-2015 04:46 Geno Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Source]
21-Nov-2015 04:52 Geno Updated [Narrative]
21-Nov-2015 04:56 Geno Updated [Date]
21-Nov-2015 16:08 Aerossurance Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Location, Nature, Source, Damage, Narrative]
24-Nov-2015 05:19 Iceman 29 Updated [Source, Narrative, Photo, ]
25-Nov-2015 12:58 Alpine Flight Updated [Time, Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Phase, Source]
26-Nov-2015 07:55 Anon. Updated [Source]
30-May-2016 08:36 Aerossurance Updated [Source]
20-May-2019 10:12 Aerossurance Updated [Source]
20-May-2019 10:33 Aerossurance Updated [Source]
23-May-2019 05:33 Aerossurance Updated [Departure airport, Destination airport, Narrative]
23-May-2019 05:34 harro Updated [Operator, Nature, Accident report, ]
21-Jun-2019 16:18 Aerossurance Updated [Source]
08-Aug-2020 03:09 Ron Averes Updated [Location]
21-Nov-2020 11:20 Aerossurance Updated [Phase, Embed code, Accident report]

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