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N206R accident description

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Crash location 40.617223°N, 74.244722°W
Nearest city Linden, NJ
40.622048°N, 74.244590°W
0.3 miles away
Tail number N206R
Accident date 06 Feb 2016
Aircraft type Bell 206
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On February 6, 2016, at 1239 eastern standard time, a Bell 206B, N206R, was substantially damaged after it rolled over during takeoff from a parking dolly at Linden Airport (LDJ), Linden, New Jersey. The private pilot was seriously injured and the flight instructor was not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight, which was originating at the time of the accident. The helicopter was owned and operated by the private pilot. The instructional flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to the flight instructor, the purpose of the flight was to give the private pilot transition training in the helicopter. They performed a preflight inspection, flight control check, and hydraulic check prior to lift off with no anomalies noted. The pilot receiving instruction was at the controls of the helicopter during the initial takeoff to a hover, then, when the helicopter became "light on the skids," it started to roll to the left. The helicopter continued to roll to the left, impacted the ground, and came to rest on the right side. During the initial takeoff, since the helicopter was about to move to the left, the flight instructor was looking to the left in order to verify the area was clear of obstructions. In addition, he stated that he'd "never felt anything that quick."

A security video recording was obtained from the airport that captured the accident sequence. In the video, the helicopter was started up on the dolly, then the helicopter began to rotate to the right on the dolly, and then it immediately rolled to the left. The helicopter impacted the ground on the left side, bounced, and then came to rest on the right side.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration records, the helicopter was purchased by the pilot receiving instruction on January 5, 2016. According to the helicopter's maintenance records, the most recent annual inspection was performed on July 1, 2015. In addition, a 3,000-hour maintenance inspection was performed on the helicopter on December 21, 2015.

According to the pilot/owner, he held a private pilot certificate with a rating for helicopters. In addition, his most recent third-class medial was issued on January 4, 2016. Furthermore, he reported 625 hours of total helicopter flight time, of which, 5 hours were in the same make and model as the accident helicopter.

According to the flight instructor, he held an airline transport pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine land, airplane multiengine land, and rotorcraft-helicopter. He held a commercial pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine sea and a private pilot certificate with a rating for gliders. In addition, he held a flight instructor certificate with ratings for airplane single and multiengine, rotorcraft-helicopter, and instrument airplane and helicopter. His most recent second-class medical certificate was issued on July 22, 2015. In addition, he reported 25,000 hours of total flight time, of which, 2,760 hours were in the same make and model as the accident helicopter, and 1,020 hours were as an instructor in the same make and model as the accident helicopter.

A postaccident examination of the dolly revealed that there were no scrapes or score marks on the diamond steel platform on the dolly. An examination of the helicopter revealed that the fuselage, main rotor blades, tail rotor blades, and tailboom were substantially damaged during the accident sequence. Furthermore, there were no anomalies with the helicopter that would have precluded normal operation prior to the accident. In addition, the pilot/owner had a mechanic examine the helicopter and there were no preexisting malfunctions or anomalies noted with the helicopter.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot receiving instruction's failure to maintain helicopter control during the initial takeoff, which resulted in a dynamic rollover. Contributing to the accident was the flight instructor's inadequate remedial action due to his distraction by looking outside the helicopter to ensure that the area was clear.

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