NTSB Identification: WPR14CA216
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, May 31, 2014 in San Manuel, AZ
Probable Cause Approval Date: 09/24/2014
Aircraft: ROBINSON HELICOPTER R22 BETA, registration: N7122E
Injuries: 1 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 the purpose of the flight was to conduct low-level aerial operations for cattle herding. The pilot maneuvered the helicopter in an effort to keep the cattle close together and did not notice a phone line in the helicopter's flight path. The main rotor blades contacted the lines and they became entangled in the main rotor head. The helicopter descended from approximately 15 feet above ground level and impacted the terrain hard, collapsing the skids. As a result of the impact, the helicopter sustained substantial damage to both the tail and main rotor blades. The pilot reported no pre impact mechanical malfunctions or failure with the helicopter 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 an adequate obstacle clearance altitude from phone wires while performing low-level operations.

Full narrative available

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