NTSB Identification: WPR13LA266
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, June 08, 2013 in Grand Canyon, AZ
Aircraft: EUROCOPTER EC 130 B4, registration: N130PH
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

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


On June 08, 2013, about 0935 mountain standard time, a Eurocopter EC130, N130PH, experienced an engine control malfunction while performing practice autorotation maneuvers near Grand Canyon, Arizona. American Helicopters LLC owned the helicopter and Papillion Grand Canyon Helicopters was operating the helicopter under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The certified flight instructor (CFI) and pilot undergoing instruction (PUI) were not injured; the helicopter sustained substantial damage. The training flight departed Grand Canyon National Park Airport, Grand Canyon about 0815 with a planned destination of Valle Airport, Grand Canyon. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed.

The purpose of the flight was for the CFI to provide instruction to the PUI, who had recently been hired by the operator. After performing numerous maneuvers, the CFI was conducting a simulated engine failure, which he intended to terminate with a power recovery. During the maneuver the CFI configured the helicopter for an appropriate airspeed and while descending through 200 feet above ground level (agl), he began to roll the throttle in an attempt to increase engine power. The throttle grip was seized and he could not manipulate the control to increase the power.

The CFI performed a full down autorotation and the helicopter touched down on the dirt terrain. The helicopter’s nose tipped downward and then it rocked back on the skids, resulting in the main rotor blades severing the tailboom. The helicopter came to rest about 3 nautical miles northeast of the Valle Airport.

The wreckage was recovered for further examination.

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