Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Robinson R44 Raven II, N89LA: Accident occurred August 08, 2020 in Logan, Harrison County, Iowa

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 FSDO; Ankeny, Iowa

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


Location: Logan, IA
Accident Number: CEN20LA330
Date & Time: 08/08/2020, 1845 CDT
Registration: N89LA
Aircraft: Robinson R44
Injuries: 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 137: Agricultural

On August 8, 2020, about 1845 central daylight time, a Robinson R44 II helicopter, N89LA, sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident near Logan, Iowa. The commercial pilot sustained serious injuries. The helicopter was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 137 aerial application flight.

The pilot was assigned to spray a 380-acre cornfield. The pilot had just completed several spray runs and was turning to line up for another run, when he heard the engine emit a "pop" noise and the engine then accelerated. The pilot pulled pitch to slow the engine with no avail. The pilot reported he had control of the helicopter, but he did not have control of the engine speed. The pilot attempted to flare and land the helicopter; however, the helicopter impacted an area of rising terrain and came to rest on its right side.

The helicopter sustained substantial damage to the fuselage, the main rotor system, the tailboom, and the tail rotor system. The helicopter was recovered from the accident site for a future examination of the airframe and engine.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Robinson
Registration: N89LA
Model/Series: R44 II
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Mills County Choppers Inc.
Operating Certificate(s) Held: Agricultural Aircraft (137)

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KTQE, 1028 ft msl
Observation Time: 2254 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 19 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 29°C / 23°C
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 6 knots / , 180°
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 3300 ft agl
Visibility: 10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.92 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Logan, IA
Destination: Logan, IA

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 41.643056, -95.789167 (est)

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