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The pilot was conducting a private ferry flight from Port Campbell, via Geelong, to Moorabbin airport for maintenance to rectify a tail rotor vibration. Six kilometres south of Moorabbin, while the helicopter was cruising at an estimated indicated airspeed of 70 kts at 700 ft, both lugs of a clevis failed on the left centre frame aft cluster fitting. The failure freed the lower end of the left tail boom support strut. This allowed the tail boom to lift into the main rotor, which cut off the tail boom. The helicopter broke up in flight falling into shallow water 50 m from a beach.

The accident resulted from in-flight fatigue failure of the clevis lugs on the left aft cluster fitting.

Although the duration of the fatigue failure propagation is not known, the fracture probably initiated in the later stages of the helicopter's operational life and propagated within a relatively short period of time.

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General details
Date: 14 February 1995 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 0940 ESuT  
Location   (show map):6km S Moorabbin Airport Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Victoria Occurrence type: In-flight break-up 
Release date: 29 January 1997 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: Fatal 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Hughes Helicopters 
Aircraft model: 269 
Aircraft registration: VH-PKK 
Serial number: 900951 
Type of operation: Private 
Sector: Helicopter 
Damage to aircraft: Destroyed 
Departure point:Geelong Airport, VIC
Departure time:0855 ESuT
Destination:Moorabbin, VIC
Crew details
RoleClass of licenceHours on typeHours total
Fatal: 1001
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Last update 13 May 2014