NTSB Identification: LAX08CA126
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, May 01, 2008 in Prescott, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/30/2008
Aircraft: Robinson R22 Beta II, registration: N331MD
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.

This was the certificated flight instructor's (CFI) first instructional flight with this new primary student. They did a preflight inspection of the helicopter together, and departed for the practice area. Once the student had a general understanding of the controls, they did an approach to a point on the ground that terminated in a hover. The CFI was letting the student manipulate the controls more and more during the hover. The CFI positioned the helicopter for a slight right quartering headwind to compensate for translating tendencies. During hover, the helicopter exhibited a pendulum oscillation that is common for new students learning to hover. During one of the right lateral oscillations, the helicopter unexpectedly lost altitude. The right skid contacted the ground, and the helicopter rolled onto its right side. Within seconds, it caught on fire. Both pilots exited immediately. The CFI stated that the airplane and engine had no mechanical failures or malfunctions during the flight.

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

The instructor's inadequate supervision and delayed remedial action that resulted in ground contact and a rollover.

Full narrative available

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