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Summary

Summary

A Distress Phase was declared by the Brisbane Senior Operations Controller when an Emergency Locator Beacon (ELB) signal was received by an overflying aircraft, in the Tiaro area, at 2242 hours EST on 31 May 1989. A search the following morning located VH-KAU. The pilot of VH-KAU stated that during a spray run, the engine failed completely when the helicopter was about 5 to 8 feet above ground level. During the subsequent autorotation onto the hillside the mainrotor contacted the tailboom. The pilot stated that he had subsequently drained the fuel system and found evidence of water contamination in the fuel. The engine was being operated on diesoline which was not a recommended fuel. The main rotor head showed evidence of a large pre-existing crack near the hub, and this item is subject to further investigation.

 
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