CEN12LA573
CEN12LA573

On August 10, 2012, about 1600 central daylight time, a Robinson Helicopter Company model R44 II, N144DZ, had a hard landing on a private landing area near Belgium, Wisconsin. The pilot and passenger were not injured. The helicopter’s main rotor blades sustained substantial damage when debris, associated with the landing, impacted the rotor blades. The helicopter was registered to Chicago Helicopter Express LLC, and was operated by Sun Aero Helicopters under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day visual flight rules (VFR) conditions prevailed for the flight, which did not operate on a VFR flight plan. The flight originated from the Waukesha County Airport, near Waukesha, Wisconsin, at 1530.

According to the pilot’s accident report, he was trying to land the helicopter in a confined area, which contained a hump concealed by grass. The helicopter landed on the hump and started to slide backwards. The pilot pulled up on the collective. The helicopter lifted rapidly and the pilot corrected left and right to keep the helicopter within the confined area. The pilot elected to set the helicopter straight down again. The helicopter settled on the front tips of the skids. The skids broke at the point where the down arm meets the skids. During the postflight inspection of the helicopter, the pilot noted that one of the main rotor blades sustained impact damage consistent with debris being blown up into the rotor during the landing. The pilot did not list any mechanical malfunctions associated with the helicopter associated during the accident flight.

At 1653, the recorded weather at the Sheboygan County Memorial Airport, near Sheboygan, Wisconsin, was: Wind 350 degrees at 12 knots gusting to 22 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition clear; temperature 21 degrees C; dew point 10 degrees C; altimeter 29.96 inches of mercury.

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