On March 29, 2005, approximately 0035 local time, a Bell UH-1F helicopter, N4040P, sustained substantial damage following a forced landing after a loss of control while repositioning near Banda Ache, Sumatra, Indonesia. The helicopter was registered to and operated by Tamarack Air Services, LLC, Stevensville, Montana. The pilot-in-command, co-pilot, aircraft mechanic, and a passenger were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and a flight plan was not filed for the local flight. The helicopter departed the Banda Ache International Airport at 0012.

It was reported by the pilot-in-command (PIC) that during the repositioning sequence the crew heard a "loud screeching noise from the rear of the aircraft." The PIC stated that he knew he had a serious problem and a few seconds later he lost tail rotor authority, which necessitated an autorotation. The PIC reported that he made a forced landing into a steep drainage [ditch], and at touchdown the helicopter struck trees and settled into the ditch backwards.

The investigation is under the jurisdiction of the government of Malaysia. Any further information pertaining to this accident may be obtained from:

Dato' Jr. Soo Chon KOK
Director General of Civil Aviation
Department of Civil Aviation
Level 3, Block D5, Parcel D
Federal Government Administrative Centre
62502 Putrajaya

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