Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Bell UH-1H, N111DR, registered to and operated by Northwest Helicopters Inc: Accident occurred May 25, 2018 at Olympia Regional Airport (KOLM), Tumwater, Thurston County, Washington

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Des Moines, Washington 

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


Location: Olympia, WA
Accident Number: WPR18LA147
Date & Time: 05/25/2018, 0947 PDT
Registration: N111DR
Aircraft: BELL UH 1H
Injuries: 1 Serious, 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Flight Test 

On May 25, 2018, about 0947 Pacific daylight time, a Bell UH-1H, helicopter, N111DR, collided with terrain shortly after takeoff near Olympia, Washington. The pilot sustained minor injuries, and sole passenger sustained serious injuries. The helicopter, which was registered to and operated by Northwest Helicopters Inc. as a maintenance test flight, and under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, was substantially damaged. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan was filed. The local flight departed Olympia Heliport (0WN4), Olympia, Washington, about 0946.

An eyewitness to the accident reported that he observed the helicopter take off, climb to about 200 ft above ground level, start to spin, and then impact terrain. The witness stated that during the accident sequence the tail rotor did not appear to be turning. Damage to the helicopter included the partial separation of the tail boom about 4 ft aft of the engine.

At 0954, the Olympia Regional Airport (LOM) weather reporting facility, located about 1 mile northwest of the accident site, reported wind 10° at 3 knots, visibility 10 miles, broken clouds at 1,600 ft, temperature 13°C, dew point 8°C, and an altimeter setting of 30.05 inches of mercury.

The helicopter was recovered to a secured facility for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: BELL
Registration: N111DR
Model/Series: UH 1H NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KOLM, 208 ft msl
Observation Time: 1654 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 13°C / 8°C
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 3 knots, 10°
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 1600 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.05 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Olympia, WA (0WN4)
Destination: Olympia, WA (0WN4) 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious, 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude: 46.965278, -122.893611 (est)

Two people were on board a helicopter that crashed after taking off at Olympia Regional Airport in Tumwater on Friday, according to local officials.

Police and fire crews responded to the crash shortly after 9:40 a.m.

The helicopter from NW Helicopters had just taken off on a test flight when it experienced a mechanical issue, according to Ann Cook, the city of Tumwater's communications manager.

The helicopter was 50 to 75 feet off the ground when it lost altitude and crashed in a grass field at the southern end of the airport.

The two people on board were a pilot and a mechanic. Both men were taken to Providence St. Peter Hospital in Olympia with injuries that were not life-threatening, according to Cook.

The Port of Olympia, which runs the airport, tweeted that airport operations were not interrupted.

Officials from the National Transportation Safety Board and Federal Aviation Administration will investigate the crash, according to a port spokeswoman.

Story and video  ➤   http://www.theolympian.com

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