NTSB Identification: WPR10LA359
Nonscheduled 14 CFR Part 135: Air Taxi & Commuter
Accident occurred Monday, July 19, 2010 in Wells, NV
Probable Cause Approval Date: 12/27/2011
Aircraft: BELL 206, registration: N3185A
Injuries: 1 Serious,3 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

At the conclusion of a mountain rescue flight, the pilot was returning to the rescue site on a ridge to pick up the remaining rescuer. After the rescuer boarded and was secure, the pilot lifted off the ridge and made a right turn, traveling down the canyon slope in a manner similar to the previous flight that day. However, during this departure, the nose of the helicopter had a greater downward pitch angle than on the previous takeoff. The pilot introduced aft cyclic and brought the nose up, but the rate of descent increased rapidly as the pilot continued to increase collective and aft cyclic. The helicopter subsequently collided with the top of a ridge crest and bounced back into the air. The pilot was able to maintain control as the helicopter settled to the ground. Just before touchdown, the pilot heard the low rotor horn sound, and he increased the remaining collective as the helicopter settled into the trees. The helicopter subsequently rolled over onto its left side. After departing the helicopter, the pilot realized that the engine was still running, and he returned to shut it down. The pilot reported no preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airframe or engine that would have precluded normal operation.

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

The pilot's failure to maintain terrain clearance while maneuvering after departure from mountainous terrain.

Full narrative available

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