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On 3 January 2013, the student pilot of a Robinson R44 (R44) Raven 1 helicopter, registered VH-RYO (RYO), was preparing for a training flight at Moorabbin, Victoria.

During the takeoff, the student slowly raised the collective and applied some left cyclic and left yaw control pedal, the helicopter became light on the skids, and started to slide and yaw to the left. The left skid then caught on the ground twice. The student became tense and inadvertently raised the collective instead of lowering it to reject the takeoff. He reported that his subsequent movements of the controls were erratic. The helicopter pitched upwards and the tail boom contacted the ground. The helicopter rolled and came to rest on its right side. The student received minor injuries and the helicopter sustained serious damage.

Aircraft fuels are a primary hazard in a post-accident aircraft fire. If ignited they pose danger to survivors, rescue personnel, fire services personnel, etc. This accident highlights the importance of considering all the potential hazards on an accident site before entering, and if there is any doubt, remain clear.


Aviation Short Investigation Bulletin – Issue 17

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General details
Date: 03 January 2013 Investigation status: Completed 
Time: 13:20 ESuT  
Location   (show map):Moorabbin Airport Investigation type: Occurrence Investigation 
State: Victoria Occurrence type: Loss of control 
Release date: 23 April 2013 Occurrence class: Operational 
Report status: Final Occurrence category: Accident 
 Highest injury level: None 
Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer: Robinson Helicopter Co 
Aircraft model: R44 
Aircraft registration: VH-RYO 
Serial number: 1910 
Type of operation: Flying Training 
Sector: Helicopter 
Damage to aircraft: Substantial 
Departure point:Moorabbin, Vic.
Destination:Moorabbin, Vic.
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Last update 06 June 2014