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On 18 June 2012, an instructor and student were conducting practice autorotation training to the threshold of runway 25 at Redcliffe aerodrome.  The student initiated a practice autorotation at about 250 ft above ground level and 55 kts.  During the flare, the tail rotor of the helicopter struck the ground and control was lost.  The helicopter impacted terrain and sustained serious damage.  Both the instructor and student reported some minor injuries. 

As a result of this occurrence, the operator has advised that they are investigating a change to the company operations manual, to requiring at least 10 kts of wind in the runway direction for the performance of low-level practice autorotations.

Aviation Short Investigation Bulletin - Issue 12

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General details
Date: 18 June 2012 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 1120 EST  
Location   (show map):Redcliffe Aerodrome Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Queensland Occurrence type: Ground strike 
Release date: 29 October 2012 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: Minor 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Schweizer Aircraft Corp 
Aircraft model: 269 
Aircraft registration: VH-LTO 
Serial number: 193 
Type of operation: Flying Training 
Sector: Helicopter 
Damage to aircraft: Serious 
Departure point:Redcliffe, Qld
Destination:Redcliffe, Qld
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Last update 18 April 2018