NTSB Identification: LAX04LA249.
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Accident occurred Thursday, June 24, 2004 in Mesa, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/07/2005
Aircraft: Bell 206B, registration: N97AZ
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 helicopter experienced a dynamic rollover and impacted terrain during an attempted takeoff from a parked trailer. A pilot acquaintance of the pilot described the trailer as a modified boat trailer, with an open and trough-shaped platform surrounded by "D" shaped tie down rings, which the acquaintance did not think was suitable for safe takeoff and landing operations. Earlier in the day, the pilot made several unsuccessful attempts to land the helicopter on the recently purchased trailer, and opted to land on the runway surface next to the trailer. After obtaining fuel, the pilot decided to make an additional attempt to land on the trailer in the dark night conditions. Witnesses saw the helicopter land on the trailer. Shortly after touchdown, the pilot attempted to depart the trailer platform and as the helicopter lifted off, the left skid caught on one of the numerous "D" shaped rings affixed to the platform surface of the trailer. The helicopter experienced a dynamic rollover and collided with the ground.

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

the pilot's failure to adequately clear the left skid of obstacles resulting in a dynamic rollover of the helicopter and collision with terrain. A factor in the accident was the dark nighttime lighting conditions.

Full narrative available

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