Accident Bell 407 ZS-RLS, Thursday 15 February 2024
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Date:Thursday 15 February 2024
Time:18:20 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic B407 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Bell 407
Owner/operator:National Airways Corporation (NAC)
Registration: ZS-RLS
MSN: 53009
Year of manufacture:1996
Total airframe hrs:3949 hours
Engine model:Allison 250-C47B
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Substantial
Location:Grand Central Airport (GCJ/GAGC), Midrand, Gauteng -   South Africa
Phase: Landing
Departure airport:Ultimate Heliport
Destination airport:Grand Central Airport (GCJ/GAGC)
Investigating agency: CAA S.A.
Confidence Rating: Information verified through data from accident investigation authorities
A Bell 407 performed an auto rotation and made a hard landing at Grand Central Airport (GCJ/GAGC), Midrand, Gauteng.
No injuries and the helicopter received substantial damage.

The crew’s intention was to reposition from Ultimate Heliport to Grand Central Aerodrome (FAGC) to conduct training exercises on simulated engine failure autorotation with power on recovery. Clear weather conditions prevailed at the time of the flight, which was at night time.
Before the crew headed to FAGC, the instructor conducted two successful demonstrations of autorotation at the heliport. Upon arrival at FAGC, the instructor demonstrated the procedures whilst the student pilot observed. After the demonstration, the student pilot was briefed and, thereafter, allowed to practise the exercises. During the final approach for runway 35 at an altitude of 6000 feet, the student pilot prepared to conduct an autorotation by lowering the collective; the instructor smoothly rolled the throttle to idle position to initiate autorotation. However, an audio warning alerted the instructor that the engine had stopped. The instructor took control of the helicopter and executed a forced landing. The helicopter landed with significant force, which resulted in the main rotor blades severing the tail boom.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: CAA S.A.
Report number: 
Status: Preliminary report
Download report: Preliminary report

Sources: (photo)

History of this aircraft

Ex N407BG


Revision history:

18-Feb-2024 11:45 RobertMB Added
18-Feb-2024 15:34 ASN Updated [Registration, Cn, Source, Narrative]
18-Feb-2024 16:11 RobertMB Updated [Registration, Cn, Operator, Source, Narrative]
15-Mar-2024 20:13 ASN Updated [Time, Operator, Departure airport, Narrative, Accident report]

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