Accident Sikorsky YUH-60A Black Hawk 73-21650, Friday 19 May 1978
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Date:Friday 19 May 1978
Type:Silhouette image of generic H60 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Sikorsky YUH-60A Black Hawk
Owner/operator:Sikorsky Helicopters
Registration: 73-21650
MSN: 70/001
Fatalities:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:Housatonic River, Stratford, Connecticut -   United States of America
Phase: Take off
Departure airport:Stratford, Connecticut
Destination airport:
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
The first prototype Sikorsky YUH-60A Black Hawk, 73-21650, crashed on May 19 1978 into the Housatonic River, during testing at the Sikorsky plant, Stratford, Connecticut, killing three:

Albert M. King Jr [Pilot]
John J. Pasquarello [Pilot]
John Marshall [FE]

All three fatalities were civilian employees of Sikorsky. The Subsequent Army investigation revealed that during routine maintenance the night before the fatal flight, the airspeed sensor for the tailplane actuating system was inadvertently left unconnected. As the aircraft transitioned from hover to forward flight, the tailplane did not automatically change its angle and as speed built up, it forced the helicopter's nose down until an attitude was reached from which recovery was impossible.

A manual back-up system was available and functioning, and could have been used to correct the tailplane angle, but for unexplained reasons it was not used, possibly due to failure to analyze the nature of the problem in time. Minor modifications are introduced as a result of this accident


1. Editors, "The Black Hawks are coming...", Air International, Bromley, Kent, UK, April 1979, Volume 16, Number 4, page 168

Revision history:

07-Sep-2010 14:30 ASN Archive
23-Sep-2013 11:07 Dr. John Smith Updated [Cn, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Location, Country, Phase, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
23-Sep-2013 11:25 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Operator, Location, Source, Narrative]

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