IAD97GA054
IAD97GA054

On March 19, 1997, at about 2313 eastern standard time, a Schweitzer 268C helicopter, N892CP, operated by the City of Cleveland as a police helicopter, crashed into a vacant parking lot while on routine patrol in Cleveland, Ohio. The flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 CFR 91. The pilot and passenger both stated that they heard a loud noise and the engine quit. The pilot executed an autorotation into a parking lot causing substantial damage to the helicopter. The private pilot and passenger were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local flight.

The pilot stated while on patrol over the city of Cleveland "at about 500 feet above ground level, the helicopter experienced major engine failure". The pilot attempted to autorotate the helicopter to a vacant parking lot. Upon impact, the tail rotor snapped off and the helicopter turned 180 degrees to the left.

Examination of the engine by NTSB, Textron Lycoming, G&W aircraft, and Cleveland Police Department found the number two cylinder had separated from the engine block and the rod cap bolt had been sheared. There were indications of wear to the number two cylinder deck and number two barrel flange. There was also heavy fretting to the number two and number three bearing crankcase saddles. Maintenance records show the removal and reinstallation of the number one cylinder at 646.2 hours since overhaul which was 66.6 hours prior to the accident.

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