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Significant Factors


  1. The pilot used an incorrect technique to dip the helicopter's fuel tank and consequently overestimated the fuel on-board.
  2. The helicopter operator had not advised the pilot of the change in method for measuring the fuel quantity with the new wooden dip stick.
  3. The pilot did not detect the discrepancy between the dip stick reading, the physical level of fuel contained in the tanks and the reading from the cockpit fuel gauge.
  4. The helicopter fuel log contained ambiguous entries which the pilot used to resolve the discrepancy between the incorrect dip stick reading and the fuel quantity recorded on completion of the previous day's flying.
  5. The helicopter was being flown with insufficient fuel to complete the flight.
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