SEA02LA172
SEA02LA172

On September 9, 2002, about 1740 Pacific daylight time, a high skid equipped Hughes 500 (369 HC) helicopter, N9263F, sustained substantial damage subsequent to a hard landing following a practice autorotation near Carnation, Washington. The certified private pilot, the sole occupant of the helicopter, was not injured. The helicopter is owned by Conner Homes of Bellevue, Washington, and was being operated as a visual flight rules (VFR) flight under the provisions of Title 14, CFR Part 91, when the accident occurred. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight. The flight originated from Issaquah, Washington, approximately one hour prior to the accident.

In the Pilot/Operator report (NTSB form 6120.1/2) filed by the pilot, dated September 11, the pilot supplied a statement about the accident. The pilot said that he was practicing power recovery autorotations to an open field near Carnation. He said that during the second practice autorotation, he inadvertently delayed adding power during the flare, and the helicopter touched down in a nose-high attitude. During the hard landing, the main rotor blades contacted the helicopter's tail boom resulting in substantial damage.

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