NTSB Identification: LAX93LA104.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 51800.
Accident occurred Monday, January 25, 1993 in VOLCANO NATL PK, HI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 03/18/1994
Aircraft: FAIRCHILD HILLER FH-1100, registration: N427FH
Injuries: 4 Fatal,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 HAD TAKEN THE 4 PASSENGERS OF A TOUR GROUP ON A SIGHTSEEING FLIGHT. WHILE NEAR THE VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK, HE ELECTED TO HOVER NEAR THE SHORELINE BETWEEN 100 AND 150 FT ASL. THE PILOT REPORTED THAT WHEN HE ATTEMPTED TO RESUME FORWARD FLIGHT, A TOTAL LEFT PEDAL FAILURE OCCURRED. THE HELICOPTER BEGAN TO SPIN AND HE LOST CONTROL. THE PILOT PERFORMED AN AUTOROTATIVE DESCENT AND TOUCHED DOWN IN THE PACIFIC OCEAN. A WAVE SWAMPED THE HELICOPTER AND IT SANK. THE HELICOPTER WAS NOT EQUIPPED WITH FLOATS, AND NONE OF THE PASSENGERS WERE WEARING A LIFEVEST. THE PILOT WAS THE ONLY SURVIVOR.

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

A LOSS OF TAIL ROTOR CONTROL FOR AN UNDETERMINED REASON(S). A FACTOR WHICH CONTRIBUTED TO THE ACCIDENT WAS THE PILOT'S CHOICE OF A HOVER ALTITUDE/POSITION INADEQUATE TO REACH A SHORELINE IN THE EVENT OF AN EMERGENCY. A FACTOR WHICH CONTRIBUTED TO THE SEVERITY OF THE PASSENGERS' INJURIES WAS THE OPERATOR'S FAILURE TO PROVIDE PASSENGERS WITH LIFEVESTS.

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