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State Police Helo Crash Charlottesville Virginia

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State Police Helo Crash Charlottesville Virginia

Old 15th Aug 2017, 14:01
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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Wait a sec, Fairfax County, the county where I went to high school for a couple of years, is about 2 hours by road north of Charlottesville. (With traffic these days, a bit more?) About 100 miles as the crow flies, give or take a bit, and a bit more down route 29.

I am not sure why Fairfax County cops are operating out of their jurisdiction? (Was the helo on loan to the Virginia State law enforcement effort? I imagine there are a variety of inter departmental agency MOUs on stuff like that).

In any case, very sorry to see these folks lost while doing their duty.
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Old 15th Aug 2017, 14:07
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Fairfax is a highly trained unit called on for many duties in support of local, state, and national duties.

Last edited by The Sultan; 15th Aug 2017 at 14:18.
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Old 15th Aug 2017, 17:46
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by The Sultan View Post
Fairfax is a highly trained unit called on for many duties in support of local, state, and national duties.
I hope they get state and federal funding, then, as otherwise the taxpayers of Fairfax County (to include my parents) are footing that whole bill. (Granted, it is not an impoverished county by any means ....)
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Old 15th Aug 2017, 22:08
  #24 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Lonewolf_50 View Post
I hope they get state and federal funding, then, as otherwise the taxpayers of Fairfax County (to include my parents) are footing that whole bill. (Granted, it is not an impoverished county by any means ....)
Fairfax police stated their helicopter just returned from ferrying in the govenor McAuliffe from the northern part of Virginia to Charlostville.

Cheers SLB
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Old 15th Aug 2017, 22:23
  #25 (permalink)  
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An update from the NTSB:

NTSB Update on Investigation Into Crash of Virginia State Police Helicopter

8/14/2017

​WASHINGTON (Aug. 14, 2017) ó The NTSB released an update Monday into its ongoing investigation of the crash of a Virginia State Police helicopter that occured on Aug. 12, 2017, in Charlottesville, Virginia.

The purpose of the accident flight was to provide a continuous video feed of activities on the ground, which was accomplished with multiple helicopters.
The accident helicopter (N31VA), was a Bell 407, manufactured in 2000. It departed Charlottesville airport at 3:54 pm ET and was over the downtown area at 4:04 pm and engaged in mission-related activities there until 4:42, at which time it departed the area to provide support for a motorcade carrying Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe.

The last observed radar coverage indicates that the accident helicopter was traveling north/northeast at about 30 knots (34 mph) at an altitude of 2,300 feet. The first 911 call reporting the crash was received at 4:44 pm. The crash site is about 7 miles southwest of the Charlottesville airport.

The helicopterís vertical flight path was about 45 degrees when it descended into trees. The main wreckage came to rest about 100 yards from where the aft portion of the tail boom became lodged in a tree.

There was a post-crash fire.

The was no distress call from the accident helicopter.

The NTSB and the Virginia State Police are interviewing witnesses who reported seeing the helicopter in flight shortly before the crash.

The helicopter was not equipped with a flight data recorder or a cockpit voice recorder, nor was it required to be.

Investigators are working with local authorities today to recover the helicopter wreckage to a secure location where additional examination and documentation can be conducted.

The NTSB has been working closely with the Virginia State Police and appreciates it efforts to support the NTSB investigation.
A preliminary report detailing the facts and circumstances of the crash that have been developed in this early stage of the investigation will be available on the NTSB website within 2-3 weeks.

The entire investigation is expected to last 12-18 months.
https://www.ntsb.gov/news/press-rele...R20170814.aspx
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 13:34
  #26 (permalink)  
 
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So I suggest we ground all the Bell 407 hellos, as some Air Forces just did with their Tiger combat helicopters after a fatal crash in Africa ....

Or maybe it has been shot down ? .... ?
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 15:42
  #27 (permalink)  
 
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30 Knots @ 2300 Feet (probably MSL) and not all that high off the ground in reality as Charlottesville is near some high ground with some mountain ridges in the vicinity.

I suppose we shall see that situation play a significant role in whatever happened.
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 16:51
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The crash site was reported to be on Old Farm Road which appears to be just on the North Western side of Charlottesville and about 7 miles on the extended centreline of Rw 21/03 at the airport.

The elevation from google earth seems to be about 200m.
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 18:03
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And the 30 kts Ground Speed?
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 18:30
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Originally Posted by SASless View Post
And the 30 kts Ground Speed?
If your tail departs what difference does altitude or ground speed make?
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 20:33
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Depends why the Tail departed doesn't it!
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Old 16th Aug 2017, 21:09
  #32 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by SASless View Post
Depends why the Tail departed doesn't it!
From the photo that I have seen, the tailboom looks severed about where the M/R would make contact.
I guess we'll know for sure when the NTSB releases the report a couple of years from now.
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Old 17th Aug 2017, 15:09
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Originally Posted by Self loading bear View Post
Fairfax police stated their helicopter just returned from ferrying in the govenor McAuliffe from the northern part of Virginia to Charlostville.
Thank you sir, makes perfect sense!
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Old 18th Aug 2017, 05:29
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People who know say the VSP mechanic who serviced the accident Helo claims crash was caused by catastrophic main rotor (assembly) failure. Hence, the chopped tail boom. Just what we are being told...
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Old 18th Aug 2017, 17:41
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Originally Posted by SASless View Post
30 Knots @ 2300 Feet (probably MSL) and not all that high off the ground in reality as Charlottesville is near some high ground with some mountain ridges in the vicinity.
Hmmm, dunno. 7 Miles SW of the Airport the elevation is 600 - 700 Feet max.

I suppose we shall see that situation play a significant role in whatever happened.
I can't exactly see how 700 feet high hills should bring down a helicopter from 2300 Feet?!
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Old 18th Aug 2017, 17:43
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Originally Posted by 13snoopy View Post
People who know say the VSP mechanic who serviced the accident Helo claims crash was caused by catastrophic main rotor (assembly) failure. Hence, the chopped tail boom. Just what we are being told...
Sounds at least not inconsistent at all to the bits of information we have so far.
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Old 6th Sep 2017, 12:43
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NTSB Preliminary Report released.

https://app.ntsb.gov/pdfgenerator/Re...relim&IType=FA

It would appear at some point there was low Main Rotor RPM, the MR Blades cut off the Tail Boom....witnesses saw the aircraft hover, oscillate in the roll axis, then spin right, and pitch down before being lost to sight.

The report removed the possibility of a mid-air collision with another aircraft or drone.

Last edited by SASless; 6th Sep 2017 at 12:59.
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Old 6th Sep 2017, 20:49
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Thanks for the link, SASless, TRGB was intact, had oil in it, and no chips. Tail boom severed. As of this report, still a few more questions than answers. With the fire damage a tough one for the investigators to sort out. If the boom was cut in flight, the abrupt change in CG (and the horizontal stab being lost) would likely lead to a serious nose down pitch, would it not?
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Old 6th Sep 2017, 21:03
  #39 (permalink)  
 
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It would indeed cause a huge CG Shift....forward.

The answer will be in determining why the Main Rotor hit the Tail Boom.
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Old 7th Sep 2017, 03:08
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If anyone has arrangement illustrations of the tail drive and control system, it would be helpful. One thing jumped out to me was the shearing of the TRDS section 3 being missing, with only an end cap found with sheared rivets. If by 'end cap' they are referring to the end portion of the drive rather than an environmental cap, then shearing rivets could be a sign of torque overload as well as simply being ripped out. The direction of loading on the rivets, if indicating rotational, can be a clue. Like these all are, the challenge for the investigating team is to determine what fractures preceded others. Troubling that they have not located one bearing and a shaft.
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