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Eurocopter AS350B2 Squirrel, G-CBHL

Date of occurrence: 15 September 2007

Summary:
The helicopter crashed in a wooded valley while manoeuvring at high speed and low height. It was intact prior to impact, and the available evidence indicated that the engine was delivering power. The cause of the accident was not positively determined. Although no technical reason was found to explain the accident, a technical fault could not be ruled out entirely. However, it is more likely that the pilot attempted a turning manoeuvre at low height, during which the helicopter deviated from his intended flight path; whether due to the pilot encountering handling difficulties, misjudgement, spatial disorientation, distraction or a combination of such events. There were indications that the pilot had started a recovery but, with insufficient height in which to complete it, the helicopter struck trees in the valley and crashed, killing all four occupants. Four safety recommendations are made.

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Report name:
Eurocopter AS350B2 Squirrel, G-CBHL
Registration:
G-CBHL
Type:
Eurocopter AS350B2 Squirrel
Location:
Lanark, Scotland
Date of occurrence:
15 September 2007
Category:
General Aviation - Rotorcraft
Summary:
The helicopter crashed in a wooded valley while manoeuvring at high speed and low height. It was intact prior to impact, and the available evidence indicated that the engine was delivering power. The cause of the accident was not positively determined. Although no technical reason was found to explain the accident, a technical fault could not be ruled out entirely. However, it is more likely that the pilot attempted a turning manoeuvre at low height, during which the helicopter deviated from his intended flight path; whether due to the pilot encountering handling difficulties, misjudgement, spatial disorientation, distraction or a combination of such events. There were indications that the pilot had started a recovery but, with insufficient height in which to complete it, the helicopter struck trees in the valley and crashed, killing all four occupants. Four safety recommendations are made.
Download report:
PDF icon Eurocopter AS350B2 Squirrel, G-CBHL 02-09.pdf (2,201.55 kb)