Monday, July 25, 2016

Bell OH-58A, N288NS: Accident occurred July 22, 2016 in Lake Mills, Winnebago County, Iowa


FAA Flight Standards District Office:  FAA Des Moines FSDO-61

NTSB Identification: CEN16LA289
14 CFR Part 137: Agricultural
Accident occurred Friday, July 22, 2016 in Lake Mills, IA
Aircraft: BELL OH 58A, registration: N288NS
Injuries: 1 Minor.

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 July 22, 2016, about 1600 central daylight time, a Bell OH-58A helicopter, N288NS, sustained substantial damage when it struck a wire and the ground during an aerial application pass near Lake Mills, Iowa. The pilot received minor injuries. The helicopter was registered to North Star Holdings, Inc., and operated by North Star Helicopters, Inc. under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 137 as an agricultural flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which was not on a flight plan. The local flight originated from a farm near Northwood, Iowa about 1430. 

The pilot reported that the while spraying a field, he hit a wire that he did not see. The wire went into the upper wire cutter, bringing the helicopter to a stop, and then the wire broke. He flew the helicopter to the ground, hitting hard and the helicopter flipped onto its side. He reported no mechanical failures or malfunctions of the helicopter.

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