Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Robinson R44 II, N178DF: Accident occurred March 26, 2021 in Dustin, Hughes County, Oklahoma

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. 

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

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Brush Popper Aviation LLC

Location: Dustin, OK
Accident Number: CEN21LA173
Date & Time: March 26, 2021, 15:15 Local 
Registration: N178DF
Injuries: 2 Serious, 2 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Aerial observation

On March 26, 2021, about 1515 central daylight time, a Robinson Helicopter Company R44 II, N178DF, was substantially damaged when it was involved in an accident near Dustin, Oklahoma. The private pilot and one passenger received serious injuries, and two passengers received minor injuries. The helicopter was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 hog eradication flight.

The pilot stated that while maneuvering, the low rotor rpm warning annunciated. He applied full throttle but was unable to regain rotor rpm. The pilot said he immediately performed a forced landing.

Postacccident examination of the helicopter revealed no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. The helicopter sustained substantial damage that included damage to the main rotor, fuselage, and tailboom.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Registration: N178DF
Model/Series: R44 II 
Aircraft Category: Helicopter
Amateur Built: No
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None
Operator Designator Code:

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: VMC 
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: OKM
Observation Time: 15:15 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 90 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 24°C /7°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 14 knots / 21 knots, 150°
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.89 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Henryetta, OK (F10)
Destination: Dustin, OK

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Serious, 2 Minor
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries:
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Serious, 2 Minor 
Latitude, Longitude: 35.2707,96.0308 (est)

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