NTSB Identification: WPR10CA192
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, April 06, 2010 in Temecula, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 07/01/2010
Aircraft: ROBINSON R44, registration: N688SS
Injuries: 3 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 stated that he and two passengers traveled to a friend's private residence in the accident helicopter and landed on a hill with a slope. They were at the residence for a few hours before they got back in the helicopter to travel home. During their visit, the wind direction had become variable and produced a tailwind to the parked position of the helicopter. The pilot stated that prior to takeoff he did not reposition the helicopter directly into the wind while it was on the ground, as he felt the wind was not that strong. During takeoff, as the helicopter lifted off the ground and into a hover, the pilot started a right turn to position the helicopter into the wind. The helicopter drifted left of the landing pad area and the pilot recalled the helicopter spinning to the right faster than he had anticipated and he counteracted by adding additional power and left pedal to slow the rate of turn. As the helicopter was in the turn, he heard the low rpm warning and the low rotor rpm warning light illuminated. The pilot then attempted to enter a hover autorotation; however, the helicopter did not make the landing pad. The helicopter touched down on the slope of the hill and rolled over. The pilot stated that there were no mechanical problems with the helicopter prior to the accident.
The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: The pilot's failure to maintain control of the helicopter during takeoff. Full narrative available
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