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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 187031
Last updated: 27 January 2020
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Type:Silhouette image of generic EC35 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Eurocopter EC 135T2
Owner/operator:CJ Systems Aviation Group
Registration: N914EF
C/n / msn: 0440
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 3
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Tri-County Airport Bonifay, FL -   United States of America
Phase: Initial climb
Departure airport:Bonifay, FL
Destination airport:DeFuniak Spring, FL (K54J)
Investigating agency: NTSB
The pilot stated that the helicopter was brought to a hover and began acceleration down runway 19 for the takeoff. At approximately 100 feet above the ground, while at 100 kts, with no visible warning, he entered clouds but the runway was still visible underneath. He started to abort and began a level deceleration. Immediately afterwards he lowered the collective, and the paramedic in the front seat said " Rotor RPM" and he looked inside to see what was happening. When he looked back outside the helicopter, about a second later, his first visible reference was trees and bushes rapidly approaching. He pulled max torque and within 1 or 2 seconds the helicopter landed level and hard, just off the side at the very end of the runway. The helicopter bounced into the air after the impact. He brought the helicopter to a hover and noted the helicopter was dangerously close to bushes and trees. He maneuvered the helicopter away from the tree line toward the runway and landed at the helipad. After landing, the right rear of the helicopter was noted lower than normal. Everyone onboard exited the helicopter without assistance. The operator stated that there were no mechanical failures or malfunctions with the helicopter or any of its systems prior to the accident. The Federal Aviation Administration inspector who responded to the accident stated that the landing skids were splayed outwards with the apparent appearance of a hard landing. Damage to the helicopter was noted to the bottom of the enclosure surrounding the tail rotor blade.
Probable Cause: The pilot's failure to maintain main rotor rpm and proper descent rate resulting in a hard landing. A related factor in this accident was inadvertent encounter with clouds.



Revision history:

07-May-2016 10:55 Aerossurance Added
21-Dec-2016 19:30 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
05-Dec-2017 09:05 ASN Update Bot Updated [Other fatalities, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]

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