NTSB Identification: LAX95TA328.
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Accident occurred Friday, September 08, 1995 in PEARL CITY, HI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/29/1996
Aircraft: MCDONNELL DOUGLAS 369D, registration: N58388
Injuries: 1 Serious.
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 FIRE DEPARTMENT HELICOPTER PILOT WAS RETURNING TO THE HOME BASE AFTER SURVEYING A BRUSHFIRE. HIS ROUTE OF FLIGHT WAS ACROSS A MOUNTAIN RIDGELINE. JUST AFTER THE CROSSING, THE PILOT FELT A BUMP TO THE REAR OF THE HELICOPTER. A SEVERE VIBRATION WAS FELT IN THE TAIL ROTOR ANTITORQUE PEDALS. THE PILOT ATTEMPTED TO GUIDE THE HELICOPTER TO A SUITABLE LANDING AREA. UPON REACHING THE ONLY SITE AVAILABLE, THE HELICOPTER BEGAN TO ROTATE ABOUT THE VERTICAL AXIS, LANDING HARD ON A RIDGELINE. THE HELICOPTER WAS BEING OPERATED WITH THE DOORS OFF AND THE PILOT'S FLIGHT JACKET WAS MISSING. LABORATORY ANALYSIS OF FIBERS FOUND ON A TAIL ROTOR BLADE MATCHED FIBERS FROM A STANDARD ISSUE FIRE DEPARTMENT JACKET SIMILAR TO THE PILOT'S JACKET THAT WAS MISSING.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's failure to secure his cargo/personal belongings which departed from the aircraft and struck the tail rotor. Full narrative available
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