NTSB Identification: ANC95TA166.
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Accident occurred Sunday, September 10, 1995 in GLENNALLEN, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/09/1996
Aircraft: BELL 206B, registration: N84TA
Injuries: 1 Serious,1 Minor,1 Uninjured.

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

The pilot and passenger of a Bell 206B helicopter, N84TA, overheard radio transmissions about a float equipped Cessna 180A, N94259, that had become inverted on a lake. The helicopter pilot and passenger attempted a rescue of the stranded pilot, who had been sitting on the inverted floats of the airplane for about 5 hours and displayed symptoms of severe hypothermia and shock. A 30 knot wind was producing 3 to 4 feet waves. As the helicopter was hovered next to the airplane, the passenger partially stepped into an external load basket on the right side of the helicopter and began to assist the stranded pilot aboard the helicopter. At about that time, the helicopter began to roll to the right, and the main rotor blades struck the surface of the lake. The helicopter then impacted the lake and sank. The stranded pilot was struck by the helicopter's landing gear skid tube during the crash and received a serious chest injury. The pilot of a third aircraft (float equipped Beaver) observed the events and landed on the lake to rescue all of the participants. (See: ID Number ANC95LA164 for the initial accident involving the Cessna 180.)

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

The pilot's improper in-flight planing/decision and inadequate supervision of the passenger, which allowed the helicopter's lateral center-of-gravity to be exceeded. Factors relating to the accident were: pressure (compelling influence) on the pilot and passenger that was induced by the need to rescue the stranded pilot from a life threatening situation, high winds, and large waves.

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