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On 12 February 2006, the pilot of a Robinson Helicopter Company R44 Raven II Newscopter, registered VH-WYS, was conducting aerial filming of a banner towing helicopter in the vicinity of Williamstown, Vic. On board with the pilot were a photographer in the front left seat and a gyro-stabilised camera operator in the rear left seat.

While in a turn at low airspeed, and with a quartering tailwind, the helicopter began an uncommanded yaw to the right. The pilot attempted to regain control but the helicopter continued to rotate to the right and descended approximately 1,800 ft before control was regained. The helicopter was flown to a nearby beach and landed.

The reported ambient conditions and nature of the loss of control were consistent with the pilot report that the helicopter had suffered a loss of tail rotor effectiveness (LTE). It was possible that the onset of vortex ring state had contributed to the high rate of descent during the pilot's recovery from the LTE.

Download Final Report
[ Download PDF: 680KB]
 
 
 
 
General details
Date: 12 February 2006 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 1229 ESuT Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
Location   (show map):St Kilda Occurrence type:Loss of control 
State: Victoria Occurrence class: Operational 
Release date: 08 February 2007 Occurrence category: Incident 
Report status: Final Highest injury level: None 
 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Robinson Helicopter Co 
Aircraft model: R44 
Aircraft registration: VH-WYS 
Serial number: 10720 
Type of operation: Aerial Work 
Sector: Helicopter 
Damage to aircraft: Nil 
Departure point:Essendon, Vic
Departure time:11:30
Destination:Essendon, Vic
Crew details
RoleClass of licenceHours on typeHours total
Pilot-in-CommandCommercial216.2863.6
 
 
 
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Last update 13 May 2014