NTSB Identification: LAX92LA165.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 46911.
Accident occurred Sunday, April 05, 1992 in PALM SPRINGS, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/30/1993
Aircraft: ROBINSON R22B, registration: N40433
Injuries: 1 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 INDICATED THAT PRIOR TO DEPARTURE HE HAD RECEIVED A FULL WEATHER BRIEFING AND NO SIGNIFICANT WEATHER WAS FORECAST FOR HIS ROUTE OF FLIGHT. THE INITIAL PORTION OF THE FLIGHT WAS UNEVENTFUL. HOWEVER, WHEN THE PILOT ENTERED A MOUNTAIN PASS AREA AT HIS CRUISE ALTITUDE OF 500 FEET ABOVE GROUND LEVEL, THE WINDS BECAME VERY STRONG AND HE EXPERIENCED SEVERE TURBULENCE. THE PILOT FURTHER REPORTED THAT HE ATTEMPTED TO TURN INTO THE WIND FOR THE PURPOSE OF MAKING AN EMERGENCY LANDING. WHILE MANEUVERING HE LOST CONTROL OF THE HELICOPTER AND COLLIDED WITH THE MOUNTAINOUS TERRAIN AT AN ELEVATION OF ABOUT 3,000 FEET MEAN SEA LEVEL.

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

THE PILOT'S FAILURE TO MAINTAIN A PROPER CRUISE ALTITUDE UPON ENTERING A MOUNTAIN PASS AREA, AND HIS FAILURE TO MAINTAIN CONTROL OF THE HELICOPTER. FACTORS WHICH CONTRIBUTED TO THE PILOT'S LOSS OF CONTROL WERE RELATED TO HIS ENCOUNTERING TURBULENCE AND DOWNDRAFTS.

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