Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Bell 206-L4 LongRanger IV, Air Evac Lifeteam - Methodist Air Care, N435AE: Accident occurred April 25, 2016 at Memorial Hermann Heliport (1TE6), Memorial City, Texas

HELIFLEET 2015 LLC: http://registry.faa.gov/N435AE

NTSB Identification: CEN16LA168
Nonscheduled 14 CFR Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter
Accident occurred Monday, April 25, 2016 in Houston, TX
Aircraft: BELL HELICOPTER TEXTRON CANADA 206 L4, registration: N435AE
Injuries: 3 Uninjured.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On April 25, 2016, about 1845 central daylight time, a Bell Helicopter 206L4, N435AE, was substantially damage during a precautionary landing following a loss of directional control shortly after takeoff from the Memorial City General Hospital Heliport (8TS4), Houston, Texas. The pilot and two medical crewmembers onboard were not injured. The aircraft was registered to Helifleet 2015, LLC, and operated by Air Evac EMS, Inc. doing business as Methodist Air Care under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135 as a positioning flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which was not operated on a flight plan. The flight was originating at the time of the accident. The intended destination was the Victoria Regional Airport (VCT), Victoria, Texas.

The paved helipad (30 feet by 30 feet, concrete) was surrounded by a grass area and a paved access driveway. Outside of the driveway perimeter, the area was bordered by buildings and parking structures on the north, west and south sides. A small parking area, power lines and an eight-lane roadway were located immediately east of the helipad.

The pilot stated that the helicopter was initially oriented on a west heading. After lifting off, he turned to a south heading so that the helicopter would be oriented into the prevailing wind as he departed the area. About 75 feet above ground level, as the pilot translated toward the east from behind the south building and into the prevailing wind, the nose of the helicopter began yawing to the right. He applied full left pedal; the helicopter may have made one full rotation at that time while moving back toward the helipad. The rotation stopped with the helicopter on a west heading; however, the low rotor speed warning subsequently sounded and the helicopter began rotating rapidly to the right. The pilot lowered the collective and attempted to maneuver back to the helipad. About 25 feet agl, he flared and applied collective in an attempt to soften the landing; however, a hard landing resulted.

The helicopter came to rest upright on the grass area surrounding the helipad. It was oriented on a south heading about 15 feet southeast of the helipad. The landing skids had collapsed. The aft end of the tail boom was partially separated approximately halfway between the stabilizers and the tail rotor.

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- There were some scary moments at Memorial Hermann Hospital in Memorial City Monday evening: a near-death experience for the crew of a medical helicopter when it began spinning out of control.

Authorities are calling it a hard landing.

"It landed perfectly fine and sat for a moment," says eyewitness Jessica Brown.

But Brown says after a few minutes, this helicopter shot back up into the air. She estimates it got about to the top of the building but hovered over the helipad.

"When it got a little bit high and it just started going in circles. And it rotated probably 5, 6, 7 times," she said.

She tells us she thought the chopper was doing tricks.

"And I thought that's really odd for the hospital helicopter to be doing tricks. Then when it hit the ground we were like, 'Oh My Gosh! What happened?' We were hoping that nobody was in it, that nobody got hurt," she said.

Three people were on board: the pilot, a paramedic and a nurse. This was a Methodist Air Care chopper based in Seguin. It's operated by Air Evac Lifeteam in O'Fallon, Missouri.

A spokesperson tells us they'd dropped off a patient. The pilot went to refuel at Sugar Land Regional Airport and came back to get the crew. This hard landing happened as they were leaving to head home. All three were able to walk away without injuries.

Memorial Hermann says the hard landing didn't impact the building's infrastructure. Patient flights were redirected to other Memorial Hermann hospitals.

Story and video:  http://abc13.com

HOUSTON – A medical helicopter made a hard landing shortly after liftoff outside Memorial Hermann Hospital in the Memorial area.

The Medical AirCare helicopter crashed in a grassy area near a helipad, snapping the back end of its tail rotor. The chopper had flown in from Seguin, Texas, to drop off a patient.

No patients were on board at the time of the crash and the three crew members on board didn’t sustain any injuries. Memorial Hermann officials said no damage was done to the hospital.

The National Safety and Transportation Board and FAA are investigating the incident.

Hospital officials said patient flights will be diverted to other Memorial Hermann hospitals until the helipad can be reopened.

Story and video:   http://www.khou.com

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