NTSB Identification: LAX00LA140.
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Accident occurred Monday, March 27, 2000 in OVERTON, NV
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/14/2001
Aircraft: Stuart RAF 2000 GTX SE, registration: N60739
Injuries: 1 Fatal.
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 gyrocopter was seen porpoising over the runway when it became inverted and impacted the runway from 100 feet agl. The gyrocopter was destroyed in the ensuing post-impact fire. The pilot had indicated to a hangar mate and his spouse that this was the maiden flight. The pilot had purchased the gyrocopter a year earlier and conducted only taxi runs and engine ground runs during that time. A witness saw him take off and immediately saw the gyrocopter porpoising. The gyrocopter left the airport environment for a few minutes and then made a turn back towards the runway. The porpoising was observed to have stopped, and then started up again with an increase in intensity. A witness heard the engine power back and then saw the gyrocopter become inverted and impact the runway. Another witness stated that he saw the gyrocopter takeoff and noted that the main rotor blades appeared to be turning slowly. A review of the pilot's airman's certificate revealed that he did not hold a rotorcraft rating.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: Failure of the pilot to obtain/maintain aircraft control. A factor in the accident was the pilot's inexperience in rotorcraft. Full narrative available
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