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On Saturday, July 24, 1993, at about 1430 eastern daylight time, a Robinson R22, N9021Z, owned and piloted by Jack Stumin, was destroyed when it struck power lines and impacted a tree, 1 mile south of Warsaw, Kentucky. The pilot and passenger were fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed for the flight operating under 14 CFR 91.
The pilot had departed his residence in N9021Z, with his wife, for a local flight at approximately 1400.
According to a witness who observed the helicopter hovering in the cove, she stated:
"It seemed as though out of nowhere, this beautiful green and white helicopter appeared just to the left of our boat. He was very close to the water, hovering, and waving to people...After the pilot waved...he began an incline to leave, I waved and he waved to me. To the right of the boat are wires that run from the marina to an island. As the pilot was leaving, he hit one of the wires, I believe the lower wire, causing the wire to drop into the water. After the pilot hit the wire, he circled the island twice. It was obvious that he was having a problem controlling the helicopter...he was able to begin an incline...it appeared that he hit a tree. As soon as that happened, the nose of the helicopter pointed down and fell to the ground. Immediately after hitting the ground, the helicopter was engulfed in flames."
The accident occurred during the hours of daylight at approximately 38 degrees, 36 minutes north latitude, and 84 degrees, 56 minutes west longitude.
The pilot, Mr. Jack E. Stumin, held a Commercial Pilot Certificate with a helicopter rating, and a Private Pilot Certificate for airplane single and multi-engine land.
His most recent Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Second Class Medical Certificate was issued on August 4, 1992.
Mr. Stumin's total flight time was approximately 604 hours, of which 177 hours were in this type of helicopter.
The helicopter wreckage was examined at the accident site on July 25, 1993. The wreckage was located approximately 75 feet inland from a river, at the top of a 20 foot embankment, at the base of a 40 foot maple tree. All major components of the helicopter were accounted for at the scene, except an eight inch section of one rotor blade tip. A fire had consumed the area around the helicopter engine and cabin.
The maple tree sustained several broken limbs from the ground level up to about 30 feet. The lower 20 feet of the tree was blackened by fire.
A 15 inch section of main rotor blade was found approximately 50 feet from the main wreckage, between the main wreckage and the river. This piece was separated from the blade missing the eight inch tip.
The main rotor hub and blades were separated from the transmission mast. All main rotor blades were twisted and wrinkled. Control continuity was established from the pilot's collective and cyclic controls, to the push pull tubes extending from the transmission faring. The control tubes to the main rotor head were bent and separated. There was no visible signs of scraping or scoring along the outside of the fiberglass transmission faring, or on the push pull tubes.
The tail rotor blades, hub and gear box remained attached to the tail boom. The tail rotor drive shaft was separated where the tail boom attaches to the main fuselage. The drive shaft tube sustained torsional twisting. The separated end of the drive shaft turned freely when rotated by hand, and it rotated the tail rotor.
MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION
Autopsies were performed on John F. Stumin and Julie A. Stumin, on July 25, 1993, by Drs Amy Hommel and Barbara Weakley- Jones, at the Urban County Government Center, Louisville, Kentucky. The results indicated that both died of, "multiple traumatic injuries."
The toxicological testing report, from the FAA Toxicology Accident Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, revealed negative for drugs, alcohol, cyanide and carbon monoxide for John Stumin.
There were two unmarked cables strung between the island and the mainland. Both were three strand copper, non-insulated, number six cable. The upper cable was 32 feet above the water at its lowest point. The lower cable was 28 feet above the water.
The helicopter wreckage was released on July 25, 1993, to the Kentucky State Police.