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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 209085
Last updated: 13 June 2021
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Time:11:15 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic AS50 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Eurocopter AS 350B3+
Owner/operator:Mesiglo (Pty) Ltd
Registration: ZS-HHI
MSN: 4442
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 5
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:near the railway line at Honey Lotus, Balfour -   South Africa
Phase: Unknown
Departure airport:private helipad near Nigel (Vosterkroon)
Destination airport:private helipad near Nigel (Vosterkroon)
Investigating agency: CAA SouthAfrica
The Eurocopter AS350B3, registration ZS-HHI, was substantially damaged when it crashed onto a service road next to a railroad line in the Balfour district, South Africa. The pilot reported that he was circling anti-clockwise overhead a farmstead, which was in close proximity to the railroad, at a height of between 50 and 100 ft above ground level (AGL). The pilot reported that he was flying sideways (a manoeuvre referred to as a ‘pedal turn’) at approximately 30 kt when the helicopter began to yaw and spin uncontrollably in an anti-clockwise direction. The pilot was unable to recover from the inadvertent yaw and lost control of the helicopter. He attempted to cushion the landing by applying maximum collective pitch before the helicopter impacted with the ground. There were four passengers on-board, three seated in the back and one seated next to the pilot in the left front seat. The
front-seated passenger and the pilot were injured. The passenger was attended to by paramedics on the scene before being admitted to a private hospital in Alberton. This was a private flight conducted under the provisions of Part 91, with visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailing. The flight originated from a private helipad near Nigel (Vosterkroon) with the intention to land back at the same helipad.

Probable cause
The pilot executed a non-standard manoeuvre (referred to as a pedal turn) in strong wind conditions, which resulted in a loss of tail rotor effectiveness and subsequent loss of control.


Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: CAA SouthAfrica
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year
Download report: Final report


Revision history:

10-Apr-2018 16:12 Anon. Added
10-Apr-2018 16:14 harro Updated [Aircraft type, Cn, Total fatalities, Other fatalities, Phase, Nature, Narrative]
10-Apr-2018 22:23 Iceman 29 Updated [Total occupants, Location, Source, Embed code]
26-Apr-2019 14:59 harro Updated [Time, Operator, Departure airport, Destination airport, Embed code, Narrative, Accident report, ]

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