On April 22, 2004, about 1640 Pacific daylight time, a Robinson R22B, N8492A, collided with terrain and rolled over while hovering at the Long Beach Airport, California. Pacific Coast Helicopters was operating the helicopter under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91. The commercial pilot, who was a certified flight instructor, received minor injuries, and the one passenger was not injured; the helicopter sustained substantial damage. The personal local flight departed from the Long Beach about 1540. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and a flight plan had not been filed. Use your browsers 'back' function to return to synopsisReturn to Query Page
In a written statement, the pilot reported that he was practicing pedal turns on the designated helicopter pads at the airport. After several uneventful turns, he maneuvered the helicopter into a hover about 5 feet above ground level (agl), facing in a westerly direction, which was conducive to headwind conditions. He applied pressure to the left pedal, in an effort to complete a left pedal turn. The helicopter rapidly turned to the left, and the pilot felt a strong wind from the right. After turning about 90 degrees, the pilot attempted to stop the left yaw by applying right pedal. The pilot lost control of the helicopter as it continued the left turn another 360 degrees. The helicopter impacted the pad, and came to rest on its left side. The pilot reported no mechanical problems with the helicopter prior to the accident.
The wind conditions reported by the Long Beach Aviation Routine Weather Report (METAR) at 1627, were 300 degrees at 16 knots.