On May 1, 2002, about 1430 eastern daylight time, a Bell 47J-2A helicopter, N37731, was substantially damaged while landing at the Blairstown Airport, Blairstown, New Jersey. The certificated commercial pilot was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the sightseeing flight conducted under 14 CFR Part 91. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
According to the pilot, just after the helicopter lifted off the ground, the passenger advised that a camera had fallen under a seat, and he could not reach it. The pilot elected to hover to a helipad located in grass area, just east of the runway. Four tires marked off the helipad, one at each corner. As the helicopter neared the ground, the pilot flared, and the tail rotor blades struck one of the tires. The helicopter rotated to the right and began to climb. The pilot closed the throttle, and the helicopter touched down hard on the helipad, coming to rest upright.
Examination of the helicopter by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector revealed that the gearbox had separated from the tail boom, and the main landing skids were collapsed around both sides of the fuselage.
The recorded weather at a nearby airport, about the time of the accident, included winds from 290 degrees at 8 knots.