Aviation safety investigations & reports

Collision with terrain involving a Robinson R22, VH-CMK at Archerfield Airport, QLD on 28 February 2015

Investigation number:
Status: Completed
Investigation completed


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On the morning of 28 February 2015, an instructor and student were conducting a training flight in a Robinson R22, registered VH-CMK, at Archerfield Airport, Queensland. Conditions were fine and clear with a light and variable wind.

The flight included a demonstration of how to manage a jammed pedal condition, which was simulated by holding the pedals in a set position with foot pressure. As part of the demonstration, the instructor conducted a simulated jammed-pedal run-on landing on a grass surface outside the defined runway strips, near the northern boundary of the airport. When the helicopter touched down, it bounced slightly, and yawed to the left, while still travelling forward at about 10 to 15 kt. The instructor discontinued the demonstration following the bounce, but was unable to correct the yaw before the helicopter touched down again.

When the helicopter touched down a second time after a very short and shallow bounce, even though the helicopter was level, the forward part of the right skid dug into a surface undulation. The right skid then effectively acted as a pivot, tipping the helicopter onto its right side. The instructor and student escaped with minor injuries, but the helicopter was substantially damaged.

This accident highlights the manner in which some hazards may not be immediately obvious. Helicopter training organisations are encouraged to consider the quality of the landing area surface during hazard identification and risk assessment processes associated with training operations, particularly those that involve run-on landings.

Aviation Short Investigations Bulletin - Issue 41


Download Final report
[Download  PDF: 81KB]
Alternate: [Download  DOCX: 147KB]

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General details
Date: 28 February 2015   Investigation status: Completed  
Time: 0750 EST   Investigation level: Short - click for an explanation of investigation levels  
Location   (show map): Archerfield Airport    
State: Queensland   Occurrence type: Collision with terrain  
Release date: 10 June 2015   Occurrence category: Accident  
Report status: Final   Highest injury level: None  

Aircraft details

Aircraft details
Aircraft manufacturer Robinson Helicopter Co  
Aircraft model R22 BETA  
Aircraft registration VH-CMK  
Serial number 4223  
Type of operation Flying Training  
Sector Helicopter  
Damage to aircraft Substantial  
Departure point Archerfield, Qld  
Destination Archerfield, Qld  
Last update 14 November 2018