The pilot reported that when he was at 300 feet altitude and half a mile out on approach, the hydraulics to the controls went out and they became very stiff. He elected to continue the approach into the landing zone. During the landing touchdown, the heel of the left skid struck a berm, rocking the helicopter forward. Subsequently the toe of the right skid struck the ground causing the helicopter to oscillate and start to roll to the left. The pilot attempted to correct, but the helicopter continued to rollover until it impacted the ground.
As the pilot evacuated the cockpit, he turned off the fuel and electrical equipment. Fuel was pouring out of the right tank into the area around the cockpit and engine. As he walked away he heard “crackling, popping, then a whoosh.” as the fuel ignited.
An inspector with the FAA responded to the accident site and examined the wreckage. The cockpit was consumed by the post impact fire and there was fire damage to the engine and transmission components. The tail boom remained attached to the fuselage, but was bent mid span. Both rotor blades were fire damaged near the rotor head and exhibited strike damage further out that occurred during the accident sequence.
Crashed on powerline patrol, killing both on board – 51-year-old pilot Matthew Wallace of Hiram, Georgia and 63-year-old David Carson of Tuscaloosa, Alabama who was employed by Alabama Power.
Door separated and struck rotors. FAA quotes this as N571LF which is incorrect as that is a fixed-wing registration [if it is an ..LF registration, then N209LF and N506LF are EC130s based in Alabama]
While en route to a medical emergency at Steele, LifeSaver 1 from Birmingham was struck by a goose and landed in the parking lot at Margaret Elementary School.
** NOTE ** Registration is assumed from operator website. Â The FAA repors code “LSV1” which refers to “LifeSaver 1” and recent photos on the LifeSaver 1 facebook pageÂ show N124AM
Damaged in hangar prior to being put into service.Â Fixed wing aircraft manoevred and struck helicopter twice, causing two long scratches, which are reported as “relatively minor” were then covered up using a marker pen.Â All activity caught on hangar video surveillance.Â Gadsden Police on the case