NTSB Identification: CEN12CA464
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, July 21, 2012 in Shiocton, WI
Probable Cause Approval Date: 10/09/2012
Aircraft: BERTRAM WILLIAM J BERTRAM 2000, registration: N115WB
Injuries: 1 Serious.

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 of the gyrocopter reported that he was taking aerial photos of the airport. He stated he was flying toward the airport and trying to take photos when he realized he was getting too close to the airport. He initiated a turn downwind away from the airport at which time the gyrocopter lost altitude. The lower right side of the fuselage and the right landing gear strut contacted a guy wire attached to a utility pole alongside the highway that bordered the south side of the airport. The gyrocopter then descended, impacted terrain, and came to rest in a ditch alongside the highway, which resulted in substantial damage to the vertical tail surfaces and the main rotor blades. The pilot stated that he was distracted by trying to use the camera and that he was not paying attention to the surroundings when the accident occurred.

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

The pilot’s distraction with taking photographs, which resulted in his failure to maintain sufficient altitude to avoid the guy wire.

Full narrative available

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