Wirestrike Accident Robinson R44 Raven II ZS-RTJ, Friday 22 December 2023
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Date:Friday 22 December 2023
Time:05:35 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic R44 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Robinson R44 Raven II
Registration: ZS-RTJ
MSN: 10283
Year of manufacture:2004
Total airframe hrs:4137 hours
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Golden Arrow Seven Oaks Farm near Dalton -   South Africa
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:Long Hill Farm near Dalton, KwaZulu-Natal
Destination airport:Long Hill Farm near Dalton, KwaZulu-Natal
Investigating agency: CAA S.A.
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The pilot stated that he was engaged in a crop spraying flight at Golden Arrow Seven Oaks Farm near Dalton in Kwa Zulu Natal province. As he was taking his second load of the morning to the farm. He noticed power lines running on the right-hand side of his track and flying further to the right. He did not see the other power line running across his track to a pylon that is hidden behind blue gum trees. The helicopter collided with the wires, and he slowed the helicopter down with a slow flare. At that point the wires wrapped around the tail rotor. He lost tail rotor control then reduced the throttle to counter the yaw and cushioned for the landing. Upon making contact with the ground, the helicopter rolled over onto its right-hand side. He pulled the mixture to cut the engine, turned off the master switch and turned the fuel cock to the off position. He then exited the helicopter and called the operator to report the accident. The pilot was not injured during the accident sequence. The helicopter sustained damage to the windshield, tail, fuselage, skids, spraying boom, and main rotor blades.

Probable Cause(s)
Failure to notice the obscured pylon with power lines during the crop-spraying operation resulted in the helicopter impacting one of the power lines.

Contributing Factor(s)
Inadequate risk analysis of the area prior to the crop-spraying operation.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: CAA S.A.
Report number: CA18/2/3/10403
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 month
Download report: Final report



History of this aircraft

Other occurrences involving this aircraft

13 July 2008 ZS-RTJ South East Tracking & Recovery 0 North of Witbank close to Loskop Dam, Mpumalanga sub

Revision history:

10-Jan-2024 13:45 harro Added
16-Feb-2024 10:01 ASN Updated [Time, Departure airport, Destination airport, Narrative, Accident report]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description

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