Accident Hughes 369E N765KV, Friday 23 June 2017
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Date:Friday 23 June 2017
Time:13:15
Type:Silhouette image of generic H500 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Hughes 369E
Owner/operator:Haverfield Aviation
Registration: N765KV
MSN: 0082E
Year of manufacture:1984
Total airframe hrs:28285 hours
Engine model:Rolls-Royce 250 C20B
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Category:Accident
Location:Dennis, WV -   United States of America
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Nature:Cargo
Departure airport:Dennis, WV
Destination airport:Dennis, WV
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Narrative:
The commercial pilot was conducting long line operations in the helicopter with a conductor attached to a long line, and he was flying it in an aft or left attitude with a higher nose-up attitude than normal flight to compensate for the load’s drag. He then transitioned the helicopter to a 100-ft hover over a landing zone, and shortly thereafter, the helicopter experienced a total loss of engine power. Subsequently, the pilot initiated an autorotation, and during the landing, a main rotor blade contacted and severed the tailboom.
Postaccident wreckage examination, which included a successful test-run of the engine, did not reveal evidence of any preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. However, when the helicopter was positioned nose up with the remaining fuel onboard (about 7 gallons in each tank), the low fuel light illuminated. The two fuel tanks were connected by an interconnect passage, and each tank had an internal baffle. The fuel pickup was located in the right front portion of the left fuel tank. Given that the low fuel light illuminated when the helicopter was positioned nose up, it is likely that the helicopter’s nose-up attitude during the long line operation led to the unporting of the remaining fuel, which resulted in fuel starvation.
The operator’s risk assessment form required that pilots land the helicopter with at least about 14.7 gallons of fuel remaining for long line operations. After the accident, the operator amended its risk assessment form to require the same fuel requirement as side pull operations (about 37 gallons of fuel remaining upon landing) for long line operations.

Probable Cause: The unporting of fuel due to the helicopter's nose-up attitude during long line operations, which resulted in fuel starvation and a total loss of engine power.

Accident investigation:
cover
  
Investigating agency: NTSB
Report number: ERA17LA209
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 9 months
Download report: Final report

Sources:

NTSB
http://aerossurance.com/helicopters/heslo-baffle-fuel-starvation/

History of this aircraft

Other occurrences involving this aircraft

13 June 1997 N765KV Haverfield Corporation 0 Okahumpka, FL non

Location

Media:

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
10-Apr-2019 12:35 ASN Update Bot Added
27-Jun-2020 12:12 Aerossurance Updated [Aircraft type, Phase, Narrative]
04-Jul-2020 16:41 Aerossurance Updated [Source]
05-Jul-2020 12:10 Aerossurance Updated [Embed code]
03-Mar-2024 17:01 ASN Updated [Source, Embed code, Narrative]

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