CHI00LA135
CHI00LA135

On May 13, 2000, at 1249 eastern daylight time, an amateur-built Rotorway Exec 162F helicopter, N962WM, owned, built and operated by the private pilot, was destroyed on impact with terrain near Ithaca, Michigan. The personal 14 CFR Part 91 flight was not on a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The pilot sustained fatal injuries. The origin and destination of the flight have not been determined.

The helicopter came to rest upright in a farm field. The wreckage trail began about 1/2 mile east-northeast of the main wreckage. At that point, pieces of Plexiglas and sheet metal were found. Portions of sheet metal from the tail-boom, the right horizontal stabilizer, the left entry doorframe and a section of the aft tail rotor drive belt were found about 3/8 mile east-northeast of the main wreckage. The tail rotor and gearbox along with the aft portion of the tail-boom were found about 1/8 mile north-northeast of the main wreckage. No anomalies were found that could be associated with a preexisting condition.

The aircraft had departed from an industrial park in Lansing, Michigan and was flown to the West Branch Municipal Airport (Y31), West Branch, Michigan on the morning of the accident flight. The airport manager at Y31 reported that the aircraft was fueled at 1018 and then departed at about 1035. The accident site is located 55 nautical miles from Y31. It is not known if the pilot had landed at another site prior to the accident or if he had been flying the entire time.

A post mortem examination of the pilot was performed at the Gratiot Community Hospital, Alma, Michigan.

A Forensic Toxicology report from the Federal Aviation Administration was negative for ethanol, but listed Sildenafil and Cimetidine found in the fluids and body tissues. Sildenafil is the generic name for the brand name drug Viagra. Cimetidine is the active ingredient in the brand name drug Tagamet.

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