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MISSING R44


JETTSET99
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"Although Mr Reeves is believed to have been the pilot that has not been confirmed. Records do not indicate that he has a pilot’s license but it is not unusual for there to be a delay in updating the database."

 

 

So, I guess that means he may not have a lot of R44 time? I hope they find him soon and all is well.

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Anyone know what happened?

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** Report created 8/12/2010 Record 1 **

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IDENTIFICATION

Regis#: 34JS Make/Model: R44 Description: R-44 Astro

Date: 08/04/2010 Time: 0000

 

Event Type: Accident Highest Injury: Fatal Mid Air: N Missing: N

Damage: Destroyed

 

LOCATION

City: BLAIRSVILLE State: GA Country: US

 

DESCRIPTION

N34JS ROBINSON R44 ROTORCRAFT CRASHED UNDER UNKNOWN CIRCUMSTANCES, SUBJECT

OF AN ALERT NOTICE ISSUED 8/4/10, WRECKAGE LOCATED 8/6/10, THE TWO PERSONS

ON BOARD WERE FATALLY INJURED, 15 MILES FROM BLAIRSVILLE, GA

 

INJURY DATA Total Fatal: 2

# Crew: 2 Fat: 2 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk:

# Pass: 0 Fat: 0 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk:

# Grnd: Fat: 0 Ser: 0 Min: 0 Unk:

 

WEATHER: NOT REPORTED

 

OTHER DATA

Activity: Unknown Phase: Unknown Operation: OTHER

 

 

FAA FSDO: COLLEGE PARK, GA (SO11) Entry date: 08/09/2010 #

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Anyone know what happened?

http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20100806X55641&key=1

 

NTSB Identification: ERA10FA403

14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation

Accident occurred Monday, August 02, 2010 in Blairsville, GA

Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER COMPANY R44 II, registration: N34JS

Injuries: 2 Fatal.

 

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

 

On August 2, 2010 about 1900 eastern daylight time, a Robinson R44 helicopter, N34JS, was destroyed when it collided with terrain while maneuvering near Blood Mountain, Blairsville, Georgia. The certificated private pilot and passenger were fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions (VMC) prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the flight which departed Madison Municipal Airport (52A), Madison, Georgia, about 1830, and was destined for the Brasstown Valley Resort, Young Harris, Georgia. The personal flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

 

The flight originated from West Palm Beach, Florida, early on the morning of the accident. According to fuel receipts, fuel was purchased for the accident helicopter at 1809, at 52A. In a telephone interview, the airport manager said that the pilot purchased fuel, advised the resort by telephone of his pending arrival, boarded the helicopter and departed. When the helicopter did not arrive as expected, a search was initiated, and an Alert Notice (ALNOT) was issued on August 4, 2010. The wreckage was located from the air by the Civil Air Patrol on August 6, 2010.

 

In a telephone interview, a friend of the pilot stated that the purpose of the flight was to attend a motorcycle racing event in Georgia. The friend owned the Robinson Helicopter sales and service center where the pilot/owner of the accident helicopter purchased and maintained his helicopter. He said the pilot had asked him to go along on the trip, but he couldn't due to a prior commitment. According to the friend, "He asked me to go and I told him, 'You really need mountain experience before you go.' I gave him a few pointers, but there was no talking him out of it. He called me Monday morning (August 2, 2010) or Sunday and asked me a few more questions about flying through the mountains. He didn't give me the route of flight. I just knew he was going to the motocross nationals."

 

In a telephone interview, a witness who lived about 8 miles south of the accident site stated that she heard a small helicopter approach her house and went outside to watch, as she "loved" airplanes and helicopters. She said she was unable to see the helicopter as it passed, because her view was blocked by trees. She said the helicopter passed by between 1800 and 1900, and that the sound of the helicopter was smooth and continuous.

 

The pilot was issued a private pilot certificate with a rating for rotorcraft-helicopter on September 28, 2009. The pilot's logbook was not recovered and his total flight experience could not be determined. His most recent FAA second class medical certificate was issued in May 2009.

 

According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the helicopter was manufactured in 2006. The helicopter's maintenance logbooks were not immediately recovered, but the friend/mechanic who maintained the helicopter "since it was new" estimated that it had accrued 300 total aircraft hours. It's most recent annual inspection was "3 to 4 months" prior to the accident. He further stated that he would conduct a search for the logbooks when he returned to his facility from a project out-of-state.

 

At 1853, the weather conditions reported at Lee Gilmer Memorial Airport (GVL), 31 miles south of the accident site, at 1,276 feet elevation, included scattered clouds at 1,600 feet and an overcast ceiling at 2,500 feet. The visibility was 5 miles in haze, the temperature was 26 degrees Celsius ©, the dewpoint 23 degrees C, and the altimeter setting was 30.10 inches of mercury. The winds were from 120 degrees at 3 knots.

 

The helicopter was examined at the site on August 7, 2010, and all major components were accounted for at the scene. The accident site was located on steep, mountainous, heavily wooded terrain, about 3,100 feet elevation, below the Peak of Blood Mountain, which rose to 4,436 feet elevation. The initial impact points were in trees that stood about 6 feet apart, and were perpendicular to the direction of flight. The scars on the trees were consistent with a 200-degree direction of flight, approximately parallel with the ridge.

 

The downhill tree displayed a large, almost rectangular scar, about 18 inches tall and 12 inches wide. The uphill tree was scarred at the same elevation, with a deep, horizontal slash about the same dimension as the leading edge of a main rotor blade.

 

The main rotor hub and blade assembly, with the swashplate and support assembly attached, was located at the base of the first trees struck. One rotor blade was intact but impact damaged. The other blade was fractured and separated about 5 feet outboard of the hub. The rotor blade fragments, including the tip with tip weight attached, were accounted for further down the wreckage path.

 

The initial ground scar was about 30 feet beyond the first tree strikes on a rock slope of about 60 degrees. The fall line was oriented about 090 degrees. The remainder of the helicopter was scattered downslope over a distance of about 170 feet. The tail section, with the vertical fin, tail rotor gear box, tail rotor assembly, and tail rotor driveshaft were about 100 feet below the initial ground scar. These components were impact and fire damaged. One tail rotor blade appeared severely fire damaged. The skin was intact, but split along the trailing edge, and the core of the blade appeared consumed by fire.

 

The main fuselage, with the engine, transmission, and tail boom attached, came to rest against a tree about 40 feet below the tail section. The components were heavily damaged by impact and post crash fire. Control continuity could not be established, but all breaks were consistent with overload or fire damage. All of the instruments located were either completely destroyed, or provided no useful information.

 

A detailed examination of the wreckage could not be conducted at the site due to terrain, and was scheduled for a later date.

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