Sunday, May 19, 2019

Hiller UH-12A, registered to a private individual, instructional flight conducted under the provisions of Federal Code of Regulations Part 91, N2686: Accident occurred September 11, 2017 in Griffith, Lake County, Indiana

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; DuPage, Indiana

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


Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms



https://registry.faa.gov/N2686 

Location: Griffith, IN
Accident Number: CEN17LA375
Date & Time: 09/11/2017, 1100 CDT
Registration: N2686
Aircraft: HILLER UH 12A
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Flight control sys malf/fail
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 

On September 11, 2017, about 1100 central daylight time, a Hiller UH-12A helicopter, N2686, registered to a private individual, sustained substantial damage after a loss of directional control and collision with the ground following a loss of the tail rotor drive in the vicinity of Griffith, Indiana. The certified helicopter flight instructor (CFI) and his student were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed throughout the area and no flight plane was filed. The local instructional flight was being conducted under the provisions of Federal Code of Regulations Part 91. The fight originated at 1050 from the Griffith-Merriillville Airport (O5C), Griffith, Indiana.

The CFI stated that he was providing dual flight instruction to a student pilot. About 10 minutes into the flight, while in a 3-5 foot hover, the student began to lose control and the helicopter began to spin to the right. As the student could not regain control, the CFI took the controls. Upon taking the controls, the helicopter was not responding to cyclic inputs and left pedal input. At this point, the CFI assumed a loss of thrust from the tail rotor. He rolled the throttle off and the helicopter settled to the ground and landed hard.

After asking if his student was ok, the CFI exited the helicopter while the main rotor was still spinning. He observed the tail rotor and tail rotor drive shaft were not spinning and could hear a grinding noise near the connection of the transmission output shaft and the tail rotor drive shaft. After the main rotor stopped spinning, the CFI found the tail rotor guard had broken off the helicopter and was laying about 20-feet away. The CFI did not recall if or when the tail rotor guard struck the ground.

The helicopter was towed to a hangar and was inspected by a local mechanic and FAA inspector. During the inspection, it was discovered that the tail rotor driveshaft had failed near the output shaft of the tail rotor drive assembly. Substantial damage was incurred to the tail rotor and tail boom. Maintenance records were not available. 

Pilot Information


Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 39, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Helicopter
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): Helicopter
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): Helicopter
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 08/17/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 02/19/2017
Flight Time:   (Estimated) 1261 hours (Total, all aircraft), 95 hours (Total, this make and model), 1161 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 43 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 9 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Student Pilot Information


Certificate: Private
Age: , Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s):
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s):
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s):
Toxicology Performed:
Medical Certification: Unknown
Last FAA Medical Exam:
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  250 hours (Total, all aircraft), 10 hours (Total, this make and model)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: HILLER
Registration: N2686
Model/Series: UH 12A NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Year of Manufacture: 1950
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 168
Landing Gear Type: Skid
Seats:2 
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 09/01/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2500 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 49 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 2653.8 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Franklin
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: 6V350 
Registered Owner: DAVIS MONTE L
Rated Power: 200 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan


Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: GYY
Distance from Accident Site: 5 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1215 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 250°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR): 
Wind Speed/Gusts: 6 knots / 14 knots
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 210°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 30 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: -1°C / -7°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: 
Departure Point: Griffith, IN (05C)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Griffith, IN (05C)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time:  CDT
Type of Airspace:

Airport Information

Airport: Griffith-Merriville Airport (05C)
Runway Surface Type:
Airport Elevation: 634 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: N/A
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude: 41.519722, -87.399444 (est)

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