NTSB Identification: ANC01LA039.
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Accident occurred Saturday, March 03, 2001 in Clear, AK
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/02/2002
Aircraft: Helio H-295, registration: N42DC
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

The certificated airline transport pilot reported that while in level, cruise flight, the engine began to run rough and lose power. The pilot said that while performing the engine emergency procedures, he smelled smoke in the cabin, and noted a substantial amount of engine oil on the windscreen. The airplane collided with trees during a subsequent forced landing. A postaccident investigation revealed that the number two connecting rod had sustained a complete fracture. The number 2 connecting rod journal displayed significant amount of heat induced bluing. The fractured connecting rod, main journal bearing shells (7 halves), and rod bearing shells (7 halves) were sent to the NTSB's Materials Laboratory for examination. A Senior Safety Board metallurgist reported that the separated connecting rod displayed evidence of low cycle, high stress fatigue cracking. A scanning electron microscope (SEM) examination of the rod bearing shells disclosed pitting, with irregular-shape metal particles embedded on the surface of the bearing material. The area around the pits showed evidence of metallic flow from the pits.

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

The shifting of engine connecting rod bearings, and the fracture of an engine connecting rod.

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