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The helicopter was in level flight at 500 ft above ground level and nearing it's destination when, without warning the engine stopped. The pilot conducted a forced landing into a clearing, damaging the right skid. Post flight inspection revealed only a small quantity of fuel in both tanks. The pilot later confirmed that the helicopter had run out of fuel. He said he had been "pushing" a headwind and had flown a higher indicated airspeed to maintain a reasonable ground speed. He was surprised that the actual fuel consumption was 38 Litres/hr instead of the 32 he planned on. He also said that the Fuel Low warning light was unserviceable and that the fuel gauges were inaccurate.
Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 12KB]
General details
Date: 17 October 1996 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 13:00 EST  
 Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
 Occurrence type: Fuel exhaustion 
Release date: 15 January 1997 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Incident 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Robinson Helicopter Co 
Aircraft model: R22 BETA 
Aircraft registration: VH-BAG 
Sector: Helicopter 
Damage to aircraft: Minor 
Departure point:Cunnamulla QLD
Destination:Longreach QLD
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Last update 28 October 2014