NTSB Identification: SEA08LA020.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, November 06, 2007 in Cougar, WA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/28/2008
Aircraft: Arrow Falcon Exporters OH-58+, registration: N831SD
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.

After lifting off from a dirt pad, the pilot maneuvered the helicopter into a seven to ten foot hover over the fertilizer bucket that was on the end of his long-line. Once centered over the bucket, the pilot began to climb straight up in a hover. As he lifted the bucket off the ground, the helicopter's nose dipped aggressively down, and the pilot became aware that the long-line was caught on the left side of the lower wire strike mechanism. The pilot attempted to put the bucket back on the ground, but the helicopter again dipped forward and to the right. As the pilot continued to attempt to maintain the position of the helicopter while he put the bucket back on the ground, it impacted a nearby Noble fir tree, and fell to the terrain below. According to the pilot and the Federal Aviation Administration Inspector who responded to the scene, there were no anomalies or malfunctions associated with the helicopter's flight controls, engine, or airframe.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from a nearby tree while performing a hover-climb. Factors include his failure to maintain clearance from his long-line cable, and his likely diverted attention to the entanglement of the cable on the helicopter's wire strike mechanism.

Full narrative available

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