DFW05CA231
DFW05CA231

On August 16, 2005, approximately 1516 central daylight time, a single-engine Bell 47 helicopter, N8494E, was destroyed when it made an emergency landing near Monette, Arkansas. The commercial pilot, sole occupant of the helicopter, was not injured. The helicopter was owned and operated by Craft Flying Service, Inc., of Weiner, Arkansas. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local Code of Federal Regulations Part 137 agricultural flight.

The 22,000-hour pilot reported that the helicopter was in "hover mode" when there was an indication of a hydraulic failure. Controlling the helicopter became increasingly difficult and he attempted to make an emergency landing, which resulted in the failure of a landing gear skid. Subsequently, the main rotor blade collided with the ground. A post-impact fire ensued which destroyed the helicopter.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector, who responded to the accident site, stated that the "helicopter lifted off the ground 2 feet, settled back down," and then "caught on fire and burned."

Weather reported at the Jonesboro Municipal Airport (JBR) at 1453 reported wind from 220 degrees at 11 knots, visibility 10 statute miles, clear skies, temperature 90 degrees Fahrenheit, dew point 72 degrees Fahrenheit and a barometric pressure setting of 30.01 inches of Mercury.

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