Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Agusta SPA A109E, N901EM: Incident occurred November 16, 2019 in Penobscot, Hancock County, Maine

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Portland, Maine
SevenBar; Dallas, Texas
ANSV; Rome
Leonardo; Cascina Costa
Leonardo; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

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

https://registry.faa.gov/N901EM



Location: Penobscot, ME
Incident Number: ENG20IA005
Date & Time: 11/16/2019, 1845 EST
Registration: N901EM
Aircraft: Agusta A109
Injuries: 4 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter - Non-scheduled - Air Medical (Medical Emergency)

On November 16, 2019, about 1845 eastern standard time, a Leonardo A109E helicopter, N901EM, experienced a severe inflight vibration and subsequently performed an emergency landing near Penobscot, Maine. The helicopter was registered to LifeFlight of Maine LLC and operated by SevenBar Aviation. The flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 135 as a helicopter air ambulance that departed Blue Hill Memorial Hospital and was en route to Eastern Maine Medical center after loading a patient. About 5 minutes into the flight, the pilot reported feeling a "small vibration" on the flight controls, fuselage, and his seat. The vibration was characterized as a lateral shake. The pilot reduced collective, slowed the helicopter airspeed, and discussed the vibration with the medical team. The vibration subsequently increased in severity, prompting the pilot to immediately execute a precautionary landing. The helicopter landed successfully with no reported injuries to the four occupants on board.

Examination of the helicopter after landing revealed one of the four main rotor blade tip caps had partially separated. A subsequent examination found a second main rotor blade tip cap exhibited a crack. The two main rotor blades that exhibited cracks on their tip caps were removed from the incident helicopter and retained for further examination.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Agusta
Registration: N901EM
Model/Series: A109 E
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operator: SevenBar Aviation LLC
Operating Certificate(s) Held: On-demand Air Taxi (135)
Operator Does Business As:
Operator Designator Code: GNLA

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Night
Observation Facility, Elevation: KBHB
Observation Time: 1856 EST
Distance from Accident Site: 10 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: -5°C / -2°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: Calm / ,
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.51 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Blue Hill, ME (ME15)
Destination: Bangor, ME (ME02)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Minor
Passenger Injuries: 3 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 4 None
Latitude, Longitude: 44.521111, -68.641111


We wanted to take a few minutes to share some details about a precautionary landing made by one of LifeFlight’s helicopters Saturday evening.

At approximately 6:45pm the aircraft experienced an unanticipated mechanical issue in a main rotor blade during a flight to Bangor. The pilot initiated emergency procedures and notified LifeFlight’s communication center of his intention to land immediately. Onboard the helicopter were three crew members and a patient. No one was injured and there was no damage to the aircraft.

Following protocol, the pilot and crew, who were all equipped with night vision goggles, identified a suitable area to use as a safe landing zone and set the aircraft down uneventfully. The clinical team maintained care of the patient while LifeFlight communications specialists made arrangements to dispatch the closest ambulance from Blue Hill to continue transport of the patient and LifeFlight team. The flight crew continued care for the patient and safely completed the transport to Northern Light EMMC in Bangor. After visiting with him this morning, LifeFlight Medical Director Norm Dinerman MD reports that the patient is doing well.

“While we work to never incur an emergency, we rely on our aircraft, safety systems, and pilot training, experience, and skills” explained LifeFlight of Maine Executive Director Thomas Judge. “If a pilot identifies an unsafe condition, emergency procedures are immediately implemented to assure the safety of everyone aboard and, if necessary, the pilot will make a precautionary or emergency landing rather than continue the flight. Safety is always first and foremost in LifeFlight’s operations. People from across Maine, in their most vulnerable moments, entrust us with their lives and the lives of their loved ones. Every day we strive to be worthy of that trust.”


LifeFlight of Maine

PENOBSCOT (WGME) -- A LifeFlight helicopter was forced to make an emergency landing Saturday night, safely landing in a field in the Hancock County town of Penobscot.

According to a press release, the an "in-flight mechanical anomaly" forced the helicopter to land before 7 p.m. Saturday due to a damaged main rotor blade.

The incident happened during a flight to Bangor, with three crew members on board along with a patient.

No one was injured, and the helicopter was not damaged.

Crew members identified the landing area using night vision goggles as the clinical team continued caring for the patient.

An ambulance from Blue Hill took the patient to Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center.

“While we work to never incur an emergency, we rely on our aircraft, safety systems, and pilot training, experience, and skills,” LifeFlight of Maine Executive Director Thomas Judge said. “If a pilot identifies an unsafe condition, emergency procedures are immediately implemented to assure the safety of everyone aboard and, if necessary, the pilot will make a precautionary or emergency landing rather than continue the flight."

Lifeflight helicopters are equipped with early warning systems.

SevenBar Aviation completed an initial evaluation on site and secured the aircraft. More inspections will be made and the damaged rotor blade replaced.

“Safety is always first and foremost in LifeFlight’s operations,” Judge said. “People from across Maine, in their most vulnerable moments, entrust us with their lives and the lives of their loved ones. Every day we strive to be worthy of that trust.”

Original article can be found here ➤ https://wgme.com

PENOBSCOT, Maine — An unanticipated mechanical issue caused an emergency landing of a LifeFlight helicopter on Saturday night.

According to a release from the LifeFlight of Maine, at around 6:45 p.m. a LifeFlight pilot had to make an emergency landing when the helicopter began to experience mechanical issues with three crew members and a patient on board. 

With the use of night vision goggles, the crew and pilot found a safe landing zone and landed the helicopter uneventfully.

The crew was able to maintain care of the patient during the time that LifeFlight made arrangements to dispatch an ambulance from Blue Hill for the patient and LifeFlight crew.

The patient was transferred safely to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor.

“While we work to never incur an emergency, we rely on our aircraft, safety systems, and pilot training, experience, and skills” explained LifeFlight of Maine Executive Director Thomas Judge.

According to the release, a team from SevenBar Aviation, the company that operates LifeFlight’s aviation services and provides its pilots and mechanics, completed an initial evaluation on-site and secured the helicopter.

“Safety is always first and foremost in LifeFlight’s operations,” added Judge. “People from across Maine, in their most vulnerable moments, entrust us with their lives and the lives of their loved ones. Every day we strive to be worthy of that trust.”

Original article ➤ https://www.newscentermaine.com

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