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N4187W accident description

Nevada map... Nevada list
Crash location 38.319445°N, 119.695000°W
Reported location is a long distance from the NTSB's reported nearest city. This often means that the location has a typo, or is incorrect.
Nearest city Gardnerville, NV
38.941296°N, 119.749622°W
43.1 miles away
Tail number N4187W
Accident date 27 Aug 2014
Aircraft type Robinson Helicopter R22 Beta
Additional details: None

NTSB Factual Report

On August 27, 2014, about 1230 Pacific daylight time, a Robinson Helicopter R22 Beta, N4187W, was substantially damaged following a collision with wires during initial climb, which resulted in a loss of control and impact with terrain about 5 nautical miles south of Gardnerville, Nevada. The private pilot sustained minor injures, and the sole passenger received serious injuries. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local personal flight, which was being operated in accordance with 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, and a flight plan was not filed. The flight was originating at the time of the accident, with the destination being the pilot's residence near Gardnerville.

In a statement submitted to the National Transportation Safety Board investigator-in-charge (IIC), the pilot reported that during his initial departure from a river bank, about 100 yards off shore he felt a tug on the airframe, which he later discovered was a wire strike, followed by a "big bang" behind him. The pilot stated that the helicopter then began to quickly rotate to the right and out of control, and subsequently impacted the ground. The pilot added that he thought the helicopter might have rolled over once or twice before coming to rest upright in a clear area with shrubs and weeds. The pilot reported no anomalies with the helicopter prior to or during the flight that would have precluded normal operation.

A Federal Aviation Administration aviation safety inspector reported to the IIC, that after he surveyed the accident site it was revealed that the helicopter had struck 4 small cables attached to a pulley system that was strung across the river, which resulted in the pilot losing control of the helicopter, followed by the uncontrolled descent and impact with terrain.

NTSB Probable Cause

The pilot’s failure to monitor the environment and to maintain clearance from wires during takeoff.

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