SEA07LA068
SEA07LA068

On February 28, 2007, approximately 1525 Pacific standard time, the belly of a Eurocopter SA330J helicopter, N330KW, impacted the runway surface at Lake County Airport, Lakeview, Oregon. The instructor pilot and his student were not injured, but the aircraft, which is owned by Sky Cats Puma Corporation, and operated under lease by Evergreen Helicopters International, Inc., sustained substantial damage. The local 14 CFR part 91 dual instructional flight, which had been airborne for about 65 minutes, was being operated in visual meteorological conditions. No flight plan had been filed.

According to the instructor pilot, during a simulated single-engine minimum ground run landing, the dual student forgot to extend the landing gear, and since the instructor did not notice the gear was still retracted, he did not take remedial action. Therefore, the helicopter touched down on its belly, driving the external load hook up into the airframe bulkhead structure in the area of the left hand transverse fuel tank. After he realized what had happened, the instructor pilot took control of the aircraft, lifted it off of the runway, lowered the landing gear, and set it back down on the wheels. They then shut the aircraft down and inspected for damage.

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