Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Robinson R22 BETA, N7685H: Accident occurred February 06, 2017 at North Palm Beach County General Aviation Airport (F45), West Palm Beach, Florida

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:  https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

Higgins Leasing Inc: http://registry.faa.gov/N7685H

NTSB Identification: ERA17CA101
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Monday, February 06, 2017 in West Palm Beach, FL
Aircraft: ROBINSON R22, registration: N7685H
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.

According to the flight instructor, he was conducting an instructional flight in the helicopter and demonstrating low rotor rpm operations from a hover. The helicopter was at a 3 ft hover when he initiated the maneuver, with the student pilot "on the flight controls" following the flight instructor's movements. As the throttle was reduced, the nose of the helicopter began to rotate to the left. The flight instructor pushed the right anti-torque pedal to counter the rotation but the pedal initially felt like it was "blocked." The right skid contacted the taxiway causing the helicopter to bounce and rotate to the right. The flight instructor applied full throttle and collective to attempt to gain altitude; however, the helicopter departed the taxiway, entered an adjacent grass area, and rolled over onto its left side. The helicopter sustained substantial damage to the main rotor and the tail boom. Examination of the flight control system by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector did not reveal any anomalies. In addition, the flight instructor reported there was no preimpact mechanical failures or malfunctions with the helicopter that would have precluded normal operation.

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