NTSB Identification: FTW96TA383.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, September 10, 1996 in RANGELY, CO
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/23/1996
Aircraft: Bell 47G-3B-1, registration: N1335X
Injuries: 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.

While attempting to turn some horses, the pilot applied excessive aft cyclic control and the tail rotor struck a large sage brush. Directional control was lost and the helicopter turned right. The pilot attempted a 'hovering autorotation' from 15 feet and a hard landing ensued. The main rotor blades struck and severed the tail boom, and the right skid collapsed.

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

the pilot's excessive cyclic control input during a low altitude operation, and his failure to maintain altitude/clearance from high vegetation (sage brush). The proximity of high vegetation was a related factor.

Full narrative available

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