NTSB Identification: LAX98LA115.
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Accident occurred Saturday, March 14, 1998 in SAN LUIS OBISPO, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/15/2001
Aircraft: Robinson R22 BETA, registration: N4079M
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 flight instructor reported that he and the dual student were doing traffic pattern operations to a grass area parallel to runway 29. The CFI stated that while they were on the downwind leg of the first pattern about 500 feet agl, the student was on the controls and was preparing for the approach with the prelanding checklist. The student reached down to apply carburetor heat, but instead pulled the mixture to idle. The engine stopped and the instructor then took over the controls and performed an autorotation to the grass field. The helicopter continued forward on the ground after the touchdown and the front portion of the skids became imbedded in the ground and the helicopter then nosed over. The blades hit the ground and the helicopter rolled over and came to rest on its right side.

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

The student pilot's inadvertent pulling of the mixture, instead of the carburetor heat, while preparing for the approach, and the flight instructor's inadequate supervision.

Full narrative available

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