NTSB Identification: SEA98LA024.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, December 16, 1997 in IDAHO FALLS, ID
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/13/1998
Aircraft: Bell 206L, registration: N206LT
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.

About ten minutes after departing on a repositioning flight, the aircraft's engine experienced a total power loss. The pilot elected to autorotate to an open farm field, where the helicopter touched down on frozen muddy terrain. As the helicopter slid forward, it impacted a ridge of frozen dirt, resulting in the collapse of the skids. When the skids collapsed, the main rotor impacted the tail boom, and the aircraft sustained substantial damage. An inspection of the aircraft revealed no anomalies in any of its systems, and no contamination or water accumulation was found in its fuel. The reason for the loss of power was not determined.

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

loss of engine power for undetermined reason(s). A factor relating to the accident included a dirt berm/ridge in the field where the pilot executed the forced landing.

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