NTSB Identification: DEN99LA002.
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Accident occurred Saturday, October 03, 1998 in VERNAL, UT
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/19/1999
Aircraft: Bell 206B, registration: N992SM
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 pilot was attempting to land in a strong quartering tailwind because his passenger had become air sick. He said the helicopter 'was practically in a hover [with] full power applied. . .when a gust of wind from behind hit me just as I was turning into the wind using left pedal. The helicopter weather vaned, I reacted with full right pedal and then the gust either stopped or came from a different direction weather vaning us back to the west where I applied full left pedal. I could feel buffeting in the controls similar to turbulence. The right yaw was so rapid that I entered loss of tail rotor effectiveness.' The helicopter collided with terrain while it was still turning and rolled over. According to the passenger, the pilot had attempted landings earlier in the day but had difficulty with the wind. He succeeded in landing after several attempts.

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

Loss of tail rotor effectiveness. A factor was the quartering tailwind.

Full narrative available

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