NTSB Identification: LAX91LA193.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 44914.
Accident occurred Monday, May 06, 1991 in YUMA, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/14/1993
Aircraft: BELL 47G3B1, registration: N304JD
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.

A BELL 47G3B1 LOST POWER AND COLLIDED WITH TREES IN AN ORCHARD. THE HELICOPTER HAD COMPLETED AERIAL SPRAYING OF 60 ACRES OF CITRUS TREES. AT THE END LAST PASS THE ENGINE QUIT AT TREE TOP LEVEL. THE PILOT AUTOROTATED THE HELICOPTER INTO THE TREES. THE DURATION OF THE FLIGHT WAS ABOUT ONE HOUR AND 45 MINUTES. THE OPERATOR REPORTED THE HELICOPTER CONTAINED 25 GALLONS OF FUEL AT THE LAST TAKEOFF. AFTER THE ACCIDENT, THE HELICOPTER FUEL SYSTEM WAS EXAMINED BY THE OPERATOR. THE OPERATOR REPORTED THAT LESS THAN ONE GALLON OF FUEL WAS DRAINED FROM THE ENTIRE FUEL SYSTEM. THE OPERATOR REPORTED THAT THERE WERE NO MECHANICAL FAILURES OR MALFUNCTIONS WITH THE HELICOPTER BEFORE THE ACCIDENT.

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

THE FAILURE OF THE PILOT-IN-COMMAND TO PERFORM FUEL CONSUMPTION CALCULATIONS WHICH RESULTED IN A TOTAL LOSS OF ENGINE POWER DUE TO FUEL EXHAUSTION.

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