NTSB Identification: MIA07CA103.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, May 29, 2007 in Las Piedras, PR
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/25/2007
Aircraft: Hughes 269A, registration: N63HD
Injuries: 1 Serious,1 Minor.
NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.
The pilot stated that he took off from his home airstrip, and during the initial climb at 350 feet and 55 mph, the engine quit. At the time there were power lines in front of him so he opted to make a left 90-degree auto rotation. The helicopter was landed hard causing damage to the tail boom of the helicopter. The passenger stated that about 40 seconds after takeoff, he heard a "pop pop" noise. The aircraft started a fast descent and impacted the ground. His injuries include a burst L1 vertebra. Examination of the helicopter was performed by an FAA airworthiness inspector, which revealed the engine was turned by hand without binding. The aircraft's spark plugs were in good condition and the fuel filter was clean and non-obstructed; fuel was noted in the filter. The flight controls were found to be free and moving. No anomalies with the aircraft or engine were reported by the FAA inspector. Inspection of the aircraft's logbooks revealed that the last annual inspection was performed on June 01,1997.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The failure of the non-certificated pilot to maintain a proper rate of descent during the autorotative landing following a reported loss of engine power for undetermined reasons, resulting in a hard landing. Full narrative available
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