NTSB Identification: FTW01LA176.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, July 10, 2001 in New Iberia, LA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 11/25/2003
Aircraft: Sikorsky SK-76A, registration: N164AG
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.

While on a cross country positioning flight, the pilot noticed that the in-flight ride was a "little rougher" than most S-76 model helicopters that he had flown. He decided to initiate an auto rotation RPM check. After disengaging the autopilot, he lowered the collective and retarded the throttles to idle. Subsequently, the nose "pitched up and snapped to the left to a vertical descent." After the pilot advanced the throttles, the aircraft began to shake "violently." Subsequently, he recovered "full control." After landing, a post flight inspection revealed damage to the main rotor blades and hub. Further inspection of the hub and blades revealed that all 4 blades had cracks about 1 foot outboard of the blade root seals. All 4 spindle assemblies and flap restrainers were also damaged. No impact damage was observed on the hub or blades.

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

the loss of control while maneuvering for undetermined reasons.

Full narrative available

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