NTSB Identification: NYC99LA004.
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Accident occurred Monday, October 05, 1998 in BOW, NH
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/28/2000
Aircraft: Enstrom F280, registration: N8618N
Injuries: 1 Minor.

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 of the helicopter was practicing touch and go landings from a private heliport he owned. During the approach, the helicopter's tail boom struck a 330 foot tall guyed meteorological equipment tower, which was located about 1/2 miles from the heliport. The helicopter then descended and impacted the ground, where it was consumed by a post crash fire. Examination of the wreckage did not reveal evidence of any pre-impact abnormalities. The pilot said 'strong wind gusts' pushed the helicopter into the tower, which he did not see because it was on his 'blind side.' The weather reported at an airport about 5 miles northeast of the accident site was: sky clear; visibility 10 statue miles; winds from 350 degrees at 13 knots, with 20 knot gusts.

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

The pilot's inadequate visual lookout and his failure to maintain adequate obstacle clearance, which resulted in an in-flight collision with a tower. A factor in this accident was the gusty wind conditions.

Full narrative available

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