NTSB Identification: CHI04LA119.
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Accident occurred Wednesday, May 12, 2004 in Winsted, MN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/30/2006
Aircraft: Robinson R22 Beta, registration: N2301F
Injuries: 1 Minor.

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 helicopter was damaged during a forced landing. The pilot reported that he heard a loud bang, smelled rubber, received a clutch warning light, and autorotated to a recently planted corn field. The corn was approximately 2 inches tall in rolling terrain. The tail rotor and aft section of the tail boom were separated from the helicopter and the landing skids were bent outward and upward. The main drive system was examined. The main drive belts are composed of 2 independent belts each having twin V's. The 2 belts run in 4 groove pulley sheaves attached to the engine and clutch. One of the belts was split between the 2 V's for approximately 1/2 of the circumference of the belt. The second belt was shredded. Examination of the actuator revealed no anomalies. No other anomalies could be found with respect to the drive system.

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

The failure of the main rotor drive belts for an undetermined reason, and the pilot's misjudged flare during the autorotation.

Full narrative available

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