CEN09CA068
CEN09CA068

The non helicopter rated pilot and passenger departed downwind for a local flight. Once above the surrounding obstacles the helicopter began to settle. Unable to arrest the rate of decent, the pilot elected to land in an empty industrial park lot. The helicopter experienced a hard landing and rolled on to its side. The pilot and passenger were able to exit the helicopter unassisted. The pilot reported that the accident could have been prevented if he would have observed the wind condition from an obstacle free area before departure. A weather reporting station 14 miles east of the accident site reported, wind from 360 degrees at 18 knots gusting to 23 knots.

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