Aviation safety investigations & reports

Hard landing involving Bell 206B, VH-EPQ, 9 km north of Camden Airport, NSW on 31 July 2013

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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On 31 July 2013 at about 1500 Eastern Standard Time, an instructor and pilot under review departed Bankstown, New South Wales, in a Bell 206B helicopter, registered VH‑EPQ (EPQ), to conduct a Helicopter Flight Review. The pilot under review flew the helicopter to just south of Bringelly to conduct aerial work.

The crew conducted practice autorotation’s with the plan to go-around at about treetop height. The instructor reported that because they intended to go-around, the flare was conducted higher than if they had planned to land on the ground.

At the commencement of the last autorotation, the instructor noticed that the pilot was heavy on the controls. At the flare point, the instructor attempted to increase the throttle, but he was unable to apply pressure in time. At that stage, the helicopter was too low to be able to apply power and go around, but too high for a normal landing flare.

The helicopter struck the ground heavily and one rotor blade touched the tail cone resulting in substantial damage, the crew were uninjured.


Aviation Short Investigation Bulletin - Issue 23

Download Final Report
[Download  PDF: 171KB]
Alternate: [Download  DOCX: 153KB]
General details
Date: 31 July 2013   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 1600 EST   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): 9 km north of Camden Airport    
State: New South Wales   Occurrence type: Hard landing  
Release date: 31 October 2013   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Bell Helicopter Co  
Aircraft model 206  
Aircraft registration VH-EPQ  
Serial number 219  
Type of operation Flying Training  
Sector Helicopter  
Damage to aircraft Unknown  
Departure point Bankstown, NSW  
Destination Bringelly, NSW  
Last update 14 November 2018