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N269JB accident description

Minnesota map... Minnesota list
Crash location 45.561111°N, 95.855000°W
Nearest city Morris, MN
45.621905°N, 95.947553°W
6.1 miles away
Tail number N269JB
Accident date 29 Jul 2016
Aircraft type Hughes 269A
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On July 29, 2016, about 900 central daylight time, a Hughes 269A helicopter, N269JB, was substantially damaged when it impacted crops and the ground near Morris, Minnesota. The pilot was not injured. The aerial application flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 137. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed for the flight. The local flight departed about 0800.

According to the pilot, he was applying fungicide to a soybean field and was on his 4th load. He was flying to the east at 45 knots when he looked down at his navigation system, as he was maneuvering the helicopter for a spray pass, to ensure that he was on course. The helicopter felt as if it was being pulled towards the ground and slowed down. When the pilot corrected the tail of the helicopter entangled in the crop. The helicopter rotated 180°, descended to the ground, and came to rest on its right side resulting in substantial damage to the main rotor and the fuselage.

The pilot stated that he used the DynaNav navigation system to control for drift and ensure the proper overlap of the product he was applying. He stated that he had flown with the system several times but was not overly familiar with it.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot's failure to maintain clearance from terrain due to his distraction by the navigation system.

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