On May 29, 2001, about 0718 Eastern Daylight Time, a Continental Copters Tom Cat Mark 5A (a modified Bell 47 helicopter), N25561, was substantially damaged during takeoff from a field in Benton, Pennsylvania. The certificated commercial pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local aerial application flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 137. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
The pilot stated that his assistant used a hose to fill the helicopter's "hopper" with pesticide. The assistant and hose were located on the right side of the helicopter. The pilot fueled and boarded the helicopter from the left side. He then observed that his assistant was clear from the right side, completing paperwork. The pilot started the helicopter, not realizing the hose was stilled attached on the right side. When the pilot attempted to takeoff, about 5-10 feet above the ground, the helicopter rolled right and struck the ground. The main rotor, tailboom, and transmission sustained substantial damage.