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Helo Crash in S.A.


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Hey guys,

 

Here's some footage of a squirrel which crashed this week in Johannesburg.

The pilot reported an engine failure and clearly didn't have anywhere else to go.

 

Please tell me your thoughts?

 

Also if you want to know more as the news about the incident unfolds here is the link to the news station that has been reporting on it; Radio 702

 

Safe Flying!

1_1.wmv

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The machine was a B2 Squirrel and was being leased for power line inspections. It is pure speculation but rumour has it that the helo was a little too heavy, also a slow engine spool down due to an air leak cannot be ruled out.

The car behind the pickup was a Volkwagen Golf with a single male occupant. His legs were amputated by the main rotor(s) and died 20 mins after the incident after paramedics tried to resus him.

 

If you look carefully you can see him triyimng to reverse out of the way but it was too late.

The pilot walked away unharmed.

 

Will let you guys know more news if I hear anything else.

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  • 2 months later...

The Chief Instructor here at my school said that he thinks the pilot got into an over-pitching situation. Remember, they were at high altitude and had just picked up quite a few PX. He said it seems as if he was trying to get into translational lift, and then when he saw he wasn't going to make it pulled collective - the engine couldn't deliver the required power and the blades started slowing down and coning up.

 

You can see quite clearly how the blades start slowing down near the end....

 

Ouch.

 

Cheers,

DF

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  • 7 months later...
Hey guys,

 

Here's some footage of a squirrel which crashed this week in Johannesburg.

The pilot reported an engine failure and clearly didn't have anywhere else to go.

 

Please tell me your thoughts?

 

Also if you want to know more as the news about the incident unfolds here is the link to the news station that has been reporting on it; Radio 702

 

Safe Flying!

 

Link to the video is broken, did or does anyone have this that they can share it with me?

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I haven't begun training yet so take my question for what it's worth.

 

Should you be trying to get into translational lift by flying down a street with traffic on it?

 

Hi

 

Not sure if I take your question here properly or not?

 

Well I haven't seen this video as of yet, the link is broken

 

After all if you are flying down a street are you already beyond translational lift? regardless if the street is with or without traffic here.

 

Is it wise to depart over a full street? Well not really but without knowing the full situation I'd personally use what I can to get out of a bad situation actually...

 

Are you talking about TFE by chance?

Edited by Bell206Pilot
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  • 1 month later...

It's a little difficult to tell from the video, but my opinion, for what it's worth, is that he was trying to enter ETL but as someone said it was high DA and heavy...so he started to settle as he moved forward. Not ensuring the takeoff path was free of obstacles was poor judgement, as was not taking into account performance considerations. And yeah as he settled, he must've pulled an armpit of pitch. But without being the pilot, it's still difficult to know exactly what happened and the circumstances surrounding it.

 

Surely s/he would have considered the obstacles (cars, pedestrians, etc) if having to rely on ETL to get airborne?

 

Well, just my 2 cents anyway.

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  • 1 year later...

ZS-RSW was a AS350B model squirrel. Apparently it was his third attempt at gaining translational lift.

The B model is underpowered for a squirrel if you're used to B2 or B3's. I've had it that the RRPM droops if you pull excesive power. Engineer explained that the FCU was set up to only provide more fuel up to 99.5% Ng. If you pull the collective past that, the Ng remains constant and the RRPM droops. Video shows excesive yaw, so my guess is the droop in RPM meant loss of TR effectiveness.

As said before, overpitched.

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  • 4 years later...

So sad....:(

Brings home the full responsibility one has as a helicopter pilot, not only to your passengers, but to everything in the vicinity of your helicopter.

My condolences to the family of the deceased first and foremost and also to everyone involved.
Lastly, my condolences to the pilot, I hope s/he recovers from this trauma and continues to fly - teaching others wherever s/he goes that safety is absolute priority.
Unload if you have to, that is just it. Unload and get fired, rather than ending an innocent life (nevermind killing yourself or wrecking the helicopter). Passengers don't know what they are talking about and bosses don't take the risks themselves (even if they are more experienced pilots).

I think there should be special emphasis made in training to takeoffs made in crowded areas.
I think it is easy to forget that you are guessing (as a testpilot at that moment) how much lift you will be getting once you reach ETL. The wind can shift or dissapear in an instant...
We believe we will fly over the cars...but we forget that we need SPECIAL circumstances, ALL in agreement, for that to happen.

Again. My deepest sympathy for anyone and everyone involved.

AP A

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