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PHI Crash


heli.pilot
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Have you guys heard about this?

 

http://www.mail.com/Article.aspx?articlepa...t=&pageid=1

 

The above article doesn't have any details of the accident other than it was a PHI helicopter that went down about 100 miles southwest of New Orleans. They are reporting 7 fatalities and 1 in critical condition.

 

My prayers go out to the families and friends of those involved.

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Only thing I can add for sure right now is it was a S-76. Heard rumors it was originated out of LFT, but who knows? Right now all I know is all the guys I know at PHI who fly SIC in a -76 are still alive.

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What I've read is that it was an S76C enroute from PHI Amelia/Morgan City to Shell's Cougar. Didn't recognize either pilot's name. Went down approx. 10 minutes after departure, near Bayou Penchant in Terrebone Parish. No distress call mentioned in the paper's reports. There's a whole lot of nothing out that way.

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I was going to post something yesterday, but I felt like I am always putting up the bad news.....

 

I did hear that the pilot was communicating an emergency situation with a local CG helo before he went down. I'm sure more details will follow. Certainly not the type of ship you would expect to see a fatal crash in.

 

Goldy

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There have been some fatals in the S76 over the years. When they crash, it's usually bad. One had a blade failure in the north sea a few years ago, and then there was the one in the Baltic, where a hydraulic servo failed and the aircraft became completely uncontrollable. That one brought in the 'stick jump' test, and AFAIK it's still part of every runup checklist. I have no idea what caused this one, but I do know that Tom had been flying them for many years, and was a very competent pilot.

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Weather reports from MSY and MCY indicate that weather shouldn't have been a factor - good VFR. If it had been IFR, it's not a big deal to file and fly IFR. The C++ has a full 4-axis flight director and FMS, in addition to a Garmin 500, which is mostly just used as a backup to show the moving map. The FMS is so capable the 500 doesn't add much otherwise. I can't think of a helicopter I'd rather be flying in bad weather, nor in good weather for that matter. The photos I've seen of the crash scene indicate a steep descent at speed, making me suspect a catastrophic control failure of some sort.

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