NTSB Identification: NYC90FA029.
The docket is stored on NTSB microfiche number 41041.
Accident occurred Wednesday, November 15, 1989 in NORTH ADAMS, MA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/10/1991
Aircraft: HUGHES 369HS, registration: N9208F
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

THE PLTS WERE MAKING APCHS TO THE ARPT, WHEN THE HELICOPTER'S MAIN ROTOR BLADES HIT THE TAIL BOOM & THE TAIL ROTOR SEPD. THE HELICOPTER THEN WENT OUT OF CONTROL & IMPACTED ON SLOPING TERRAIN NEAR THE APCH END OF RWY 11. NO PREIMPACT PART FAILURE OR MALFUNCTION OF THE ACFT OR ENG WAS FOUND DURING THE INVESTIGATION. THE PLT-IN-COMMAND (PIC) HAD A COMMERCIAL CERTIFICATE WITH AIRPLANE SINGLE/MULTI-ENG LAND & INSTRUMENT RATINGS, BUT HE HELD ONLY A PRIVATE CERTIFICATE FOR ROTORCRAFT/HELICOPTERS. ON THE ACDNT FLT, HE OCCUPIED THE RGT PLT SEAT, WHILE THE OTHER PLT WAS IN THE LEFT SEAT. THIS HELICOPTER IS NORMALLY FLOWN FROM THE LEFT SEAT. THE LEFT SEAT OCCUPANT HAD AN ATP CERTIFICATE FOR MULTI-ENG LAND AIRPLANES & WAS GETTING READY FOR A CHECK FLT TO OBTAIN A PRIVATE ROTORCRAFT RATING. MANUFACTURING PSNL AT MCDONNELL DOUGLAS RPRTD THAT THE MAIN ROTOR BLADES WOULD NOT STRIKE THE TAIL BOOM, IF THE ROTOR RPM WAS ABOVE 90%. APRX 28 WEST AT ALBANY, THE 1550 EST WIND WAS FROM 160 DEG AT 16 GUSTING 23 KTS.

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

FAILURE OF THE PILOT-IN-COMMAND (PIC) TO ASSURE PROPER ROTOR RPM AND PROPER OPERATION OF THE FLIGHT CONTROLS DURING AN APPROACH IN GUSTY WIND CONDITIONS. A FACTOR RELATED TO THE ACCIDENT WAS: THE PIC'S LACK OF EXPERIENCE IN THE TYPE OF OPERATION.

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