NTSB Identification: ERA09CA205
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, March 21, 2009 in Richmond, VA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 06/11/2009
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER R22 BETA, registration: N2360M
Injuries: 2 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 helicopter pilot stated that, upon reaching cruising altitude, he reached to pull the trim adjustment knob but inadvertently pulled the mixture control knob, which caused the engine to shutdown. The pilot immediately lowered the collective lever and entered an autorotation. He attempted to restart the engine using the throttle and the starter but did not advance the mixture control from the idle cut off position. As he flared the helicopter to land, the windscreen contacted powerlines, and then the helicopter struck an automobile on a roadway. The helicopter sustained damage to the windscreen, main rotor blades, and tailboom. The Pilot's Operating Handbook for the Robinson R-22 states that "If the mixture control is inadvertently pulled in flight, engine stoppage will result. To avoid pulling the wrong control, always reach around left side of cyclic to actuate lateral trim."

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

A loss of engine power due to the pilot inadvertently shutting down the engine.

Full narrative available

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