NTSB Identification: WPR13FA074
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, December 23, 2012 in Wellton, AZ
Aircraft: CHARLAND TIM VORTEX, registration: N618TC
Injuries: 1 Fatal.
This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.
On December 23, 2012, about 1427 mountain standard time, a Charland Vortex, N618TC, sustained substantial damage when it impacted terrain near a private airport near Wellton, Arizona. The gyrocopter was registered and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The private pilot, who was the sole occupant of the helicopter, was fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the personal local flight which departed at an undetermined time.
A witness who was located near the airport reported observing the gyrocopter descend rapidly and impact the ground nose first. Another witness, who was flying in the airport traffic pattern, reported that the gyrocopter was performing numerous takeoffs and landings. He further stated that while on takeoff roll he noticed the wreckage of the gyrocopter and aborted his takeoff in order to go to the wreckage and render assistance.
Examination of the accident site by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator in charge (IIC) revealed that the wreckage of the gyrocopter was located about 50 feet west from runway 36 about halfway down the runway. All major structural components of the gyrocopter were located within an approximate 85-foot long debris path. The gyrocopter was recovered to a secure location for further examination.
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