On 13 May 2005, a McDonnell Douglas Hughes 369E helicopter, registered VH-INM, experienced an in-flight failure of the tailrotor drive shaft. The aircraft had departed Archerfield Airport, Qld, and was in climb to cruise at approximately 1,000 ft above ground level when the pilot encountered tailrotor control difficulties. The aircraft was landed and brought to rest in an upright position at Fig Tree Pocket, Qld.
The broken tail shaft (P/N 369D21615-41) was submitted to the ATSB, where examination revealed that the component had sustained a twisting buckling failure from excessive torsional loads. The investigation did not reveal any evidence of pre-existing damage that might have initiated the failure.
|Date:||13 May 2005||Investigation status:||Completed|
|Location:||Fig Tree Pocket|
|Release date:||22 December 2006||Occurrence category:||Incident|
|Report status:||Final||Highest injury level:||None|
|Aircraft manufacturer||Hughes Helicopters|
|Type of operation||Aerial Work|
|Damage to aircraft||Minor|
|Departure point||Archerfield, QLD|