ASN logo
ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 188090
Last updated: 6 September 2021
This information is added by users of ASN. Neither ASN nor the Flight Safety Foundation are responsible for the completeness or correctness of this information. If you feel this information is incomplete or incorrect, you can submit corrected information.

Type:Silhouette image of generic R44 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Robinson R44 Raven II
Registration: N789MR
MSN: 10561
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Jonesboro Municipal Airport (KJBR), AR -   United States of America
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:Jonesboro, AR (23AR)
Destination airport:Jonesboro, AR (23AR)
Investigating agency: NTSB
During the 2 to 3 hours before the accident, a witness saw the commercial pilot drinking from a cup that smelled like alcohol and noticed that he refilled the cup two or three times. He then heard the pilot say that he was going to put on an airshow. The helicopter lifted off at a 45 angle backward and upward, reach an altitude of about 125 ft, and then descend out of sight behind hangars. A postaccident examination revealed that the helicopter's tail contacted the ground behind the hangars resulting in separation of both tail rotor blades. The helicopter then rose above the hangars and began to spin. The helicopter descended again, impacted terrain, and burst into flames. The examination of the wreckage did not reveal evidence of any preimpact anomalies that would have precluded normal operation of the helicopter. Toxicology testing detected diphenhydramine, a sedating antihistamine, and elevated levels of ethanol in the pilot's blood and tissues. The pilot was most likely impaired by the combination of ingested alcohol and the use of diphenhydramine, both of which are central nervous system depressants. The impairing effects of the combination of these substances most likely contributed to his decision to fly after drinking alcohol as well as his inability to maintain control of the helicopter.

Probable Cause: The pilot's failure to maintain helicopter control during takeoff. Contributing to the accident was the pilot's impairment due to his combined use of alcohol and diphenhydramine, which led to his improper decision to fly after drinking alcohol and degraded his ability to maintain control of the helicopter.


FAA register:

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: NTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Download report: Final report


Revision history:

13-Jun-2016 15:19 Geno Added
13-Jun-2016 18:16 Geno Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Operator, Source, Damage, Narrative]
27-Jun-2016 14:21 Aerossurance Updated [Time, Location, Nature, Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Damage, Narrative]
27-Jun-2016 14:21 Aerossurance Updated [Phase]
21-Dec-2016 19:30 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
14-Apr-2018 11:39 Aerossurance Updated [Operator, Source, Narrative]
16-Apr-2018 19:31 ASN Update Bot Updated [Departure airport, Destination airport, Source, Narrative]
12-Jun-2021 08:35 Aerossurance Updated [Source, Embed code, Narrative]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description