Saturday, August 28, 2021

RAF 2000, N9012R: Accident occurred August 07, 2021 at Chambers County Airport (T00), Anahuac, Texas

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; Houston, Texas

Location: Anahuac, TX 
Accident Number: CEN21LA363
Date & Time: August 7, 2021, 11:15 Local 
Registration: UNREGISTERED 
Aircraft: Rotary RAF2000
Injuries: 1 Minor, 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Flight test

On August 7, 2021, about 1115 central daylight time, an unregistered Rotary Air Force RAF 2000 gyroplane, sustained substantial damage when it was involved in an accident near Anahuac, Texas. The pilot was uninjured, and the passenger sustained minor injuries. The flight was operated as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 test flight.

The pilot stated that he was completing a test flight after a new trim system was installed. After departure, about 50 ft above ground level, he actuated the trim switch and did not notice an immediate response. Suddenly the nose pitched up, then pitched down as the gyroplane rapidly descended toward the ground. The tailwheel and rotor blades struck the ground and the gyroplane rolled onto its right side. The pilot stated that a trim limit switch had not been installed.

Figure 1 shows the gyroplane on its right side in a field. The fuselage, empennage, and rotor blades sustained substantial damage.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Rotary 
Registration: UNREG
Model/Series: RAF2000 STD
Aircraft Category: Gyroplane
Amateur Built: Yes
Operator: On file
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: KBMT,33 ft msl 
Observation Time: 11:10 Local
Distance from Accident Site: 30 Nautical Miles 
Temperature/Dew Point: 32°C /24°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 4 knots / , 210°
Lowest Ceiling: None 
Visibility: 10 miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.05 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Anahuac, TX 
Destination: Anahuac, TX

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Minor 
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A 
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor, 1 None
Latitude, Longitude: 29.763259,-94.660782 (est)

CHAMBERS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- Two people aboard a small gyrocopter sustained minor injuries when it crashed while leaving the Chambers County Airport on Saturday, according to the sheriff's office.

The aircraft was about 40 to 50 feet in the air when something went wrong and crashed on airport grounds, according to Sheriff Brian C. Hawthorne.

Hawthorne said the crash happened on a grassy area.

The sheriff later identified the pilot as 76-year-old Danny Whitten and the co-pilot as 65-year-old Anthony Thomas.

Firefighters and EMS crews were also called to the scene.

No other details regarding the occupants' condition were released.

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