LAX96LA149
LAX96LA149

On November 2, 1995, about 1000 hours local ship time, a Bell 47G-4A helicopter, N99138, collided with the Pacific Ocean about 800 miles east of Guam, MP, while attempting a precautionary return to the tuna fishing vessel MV Milagros Z. The aircraft was operated by Z Fishing Company of Pita, Guam, MP, and was engaged in fish spotting operations. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time and no flight plan was filed. The helicopter was destroyed. Neither the certificated commercial pilot nor the spotter was injured. The flight originated from the ship about 5 minutes prior to the accident.

The pilot reported to his insurance company adjuster that shortly after liftoff he experienced a hydraulic failure. The seas were reported as high, and the pilot did not feel he could safely return to the pitching and rolling ship deck without hydraulic assist. He decided to land in the water next to the ship. While hovering just above the water, the spotter jumped out of the helicopter without permission from the pilot. The sudden imbalance caused the pilot to lose control of the helicopter and it rolled over, collided with the water and sank.

The pilot did not report the accident to either the Safety Board or to the FAA. The accident was reported by the insurance company adjuster on March 16, 1996. To date, the pilot has not responded to repeated written requests to complete a Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident Report, NTSB Form 6120.1/2.

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