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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 228
Last updated: 22 September 2021
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Time:12:55 ESuT
Type:Silhouette image of generic B06 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Bell 206B-2 JetRanger II
Registration: VH-PMO
MSN: 549
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Mangalore, Aero., VIC -   Australia
Phase: Take off
Departure airport:Mangalore, VIC
Destination airport:
The pilot was undergoing his initial helicopter licence training and was authorised to fly three solo circuits at Mangalore. A helicopter flying instructor briefed him for the flight. The engine start was conducted by the pilot but monitored by the instructor, who vacated the helicopter shortly after.

As the helicopter started to lift off the ground into a hover, it rolled to the right until the main rotor struck the ground. The main rotor and transmission then separated from the fuselage, which landed on its right side, facing in the same direction as it was parked. Several rescuers reached the accident site within seconds and shut down the engine. They released the pilot's lap seat belt and moved him from the wreckage. A short time later, the pilot died of his injuries.

The autopsy report attributed the cause of death to head injuries. The pilot's injuries and damage to the aircraft were consistent with his head having impacted the upper door surround structure. The pilot did not have his upper body restraint harness secured. The aircraft checklist contained a requirement that the pilot's seat harness be secured before the engine was started. The flying school's procedures required that the pilot's complete harness, including the shoulder restraint, be secured before the engine was started.

Initial examination of the wreckage disclosed that the left side of the front of the cockpit had been severed. The right side and rear of the cockpit were intact and relatively undamaged. The skids were undamaged. Both main rotor blades had broken into several pieces and were lying on the tarmac near the fuselage. Abrasion marks on the rotor blades and impact marks on the ground indicated that the helicopter had rolled to the right until the main rotor had contacted the tarmac. There were no marks on the tarmac to indicate that the skids had been dragged sideways, had sunk into the tarmac surface, or had stuck to the surface.


ATSB Occurrence Nr. 199800442


Photo of VH-PMO courtesy

Melbourne - Essendon (YMEN / MEB)
15 September 1980; (c) David Tanner (via Daniel Tanner)

Revision history:

21-Jan-2008 10:00 ASN archive Added
07-Apr-2015 22:14 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Cn, Operator, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Phase, Nature, Departure airport, Damage, Narrative]

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