NTSB Identification: BFO94LA105.
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Accident occurred Friday, June 17, 1994 in ELIZABETHTOWN, KY
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/24/1995
Aircraft: ROBINSON R22 BETA, registration: N2346J
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

THE PILOT AND PASSENGER WERE DEPARTING FROM A LOT THAT WAS SURROUNDED BY OBSTRUCTIONS. ACCORDING TO THE PILOT, HE TOOK OFF IN A HOVER, THEN AS THE HELICOPTER WAS PASSING TREES AT ABOUT 70 FEET AND 30 TO 35 KNOTS, IT BEGAN SPINNING TO THE RIGHT. HE SAID HE TRIED TO STOP THE TURNING WITH LEFT PEDAL, WHICH DID NOT CORRECT THE PROBLEM. HE ENTERED AN AUTOROTATION TO A ROAD. DURING THE AUTOROTATIVE LANDING, THE HELICOPTER TOUCHED DOWN HARD, DAMAGING THE UNDERSIDE OF THE AIRFRAME. ACCORDING TO WITNESSES, THE MAIN ROTOR BLADES CLIPPED A TREE, BUT NO BLADE DAMAGE WAS REPORTED. POST-ACCIDENT EXAMINATION REVEALED NO PREIMPACT MECHANICAL DISCREPANCIES. ACCORDING TO THE HEIGHT-VELOCITY DIAGRAM IN THE R22 OPERATING HANDBOOK, DIRECTIONAL CONTROL WAS LOST WHEN THE HELICOPTER WAS OUTSIDE THE AREA FOR THE 'RECOMMENDED TAKE-OFF PROFILE' (AIRSPEED/ALTITUDE ENVELOPE FOR A SUCCESSFUL AUTOROTATION).

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:

THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO MAINTAIN DIRECTIONAL CONTROL. A FACTOR RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WAS: THE HELICOPTER WAS OUTSIDE THE HEIGHT-VELOCITY ENVELOPE (FOR A SUCCESSFUL AUTOROTATION), WHEN LOSS OF DIRECTIONAL CONTROL OCCURRED.

Full narrative available

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