NTSB Identification: CHI08CA238.
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Accident occurred Tuesday, August 05, 2008 in Buffalo, ND
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/28/2008
Aircraft: Robinson R22 Beta, registration: N57UP
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.
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 reported that after passing over power lines, he performed a steep descent toward the field he was spraying. The helicopter had a "high descent rate and excessive nose down attitude" during the spray run entry. The pilot was unable to arrest the descent before the main rotor speed dropped below a safe operating speed. A run-on landing was made in the field at about 30 mph, but the helicopter pitched forward and the main rotor impacted terrain. The main rotor, tailboom, fuselage, and landing skids were damaged. The pilot reported that the accident could have been prevented if he had performed a "less aggressive spray run entry."
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's excessive descent rate and his failure to maintain clearance from terrain during the spray run entry.
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