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UH1-B Fatal West Virginia 6/22

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UH1-B Fatal West Virginia 6/22

Old 5th Jul 2022, 13:57
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Gordy,

Are you saying your FAA POI is not helicopter rated but has a 121 background with Delta?

Who does your Check Airman Rides? The POI with no helicopter experience?
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Old 5th Jul 2022, 16:45
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by SASless View Post
Gordy,
Are you saying your FAA POI is not helicopter rated but has a 121 background with Delta?
Yes. There are no helicopter POI's in the Sacramento FAA Office

Originally Posted by SASless View Post
Who does your Check Airman Rides? The POI with no helicopter experience?
The last one was done by an inspector from the Alaska Office who came down and spent a few weeks travelling the West coast and getting everyone current again. I am due in November, so we will see who gets it this year.
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Old 5th Jul 2022, 18:02
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Sounds like the FW centric FAA needs to re-organize and split Rotorcraft issues and oversight into a separate and new Directorate with a large Office in Oklahoma City.

That. has been the Achilles Heel of the FAA since helicopters first appeared....all of the Regs and Rules were based upon Airplanes and they never quite caught up as the Fixed Wing Mafia garnered the promotions and choice assignments and the Rotorcraft only guys missed those opportunities.

Just one man's opinion.....prove me wrong.
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Old 5th Jul 2022, 19:52
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I am an ex-knuckle dragger of both rotary & fixed wing, not that that has any relevance to this tragic accident. I have the utmost respect to all those aviators who returned me home safe after a few thousand hours.

It is reported that this operation has been running for more than 7 years. My question is: At what point does something appear to be/become normal and no-one questions it? Until tragedy happens and then it is too late.

Do people actually ask whether an operator is legal, especially after all that time? And if you do, do you take the ‘yes’ answer at face value? (7 years!)

As to the fare paying passenger question, if you are asked to chip in (donate) for fuel, at what point does that invalidate any licence/insurance?

My own take on the video; it is an ill timed distraction.

My sincerest condolences to all of those who have been affected by this.
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Old 6th Jul 2022, 22:04
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So they flew low, clipped a wire, and died. Not exclusively the turf of the unwashed, judging from the number of similar incidents happening to well-trained militaries, and regulated and AOC wall-papered civil operators.

Is there an RFM limitation to fly the Huey only from the right seat? We regularly fly the similar 212 single pilot from the left. There's a whole tolerated industry to fly passengers in warbirds, for some sanctioned compensation. Flying NOE (corrected per LRP below) is inviting disaster and to me has no place in joyrides, especially with a passenger's hands on the controls and the pilot turned around
to entertain the back seat passengers. Did the tragic flight deviate from the previously defined route, then loose or non-existent ops control.

Maybe at the end of the investigation it will end up like the Irish SAR 92, nobody at fault, just an accident.




Last edited by malabo; 7th Jul 2022 at 01:09.
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Old 7th Jul 2022, 00:16
  #26 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by malabo View Post
So they flew low, clipped a wire, and died. Not exclusively the turf of the unwashed, judging from the number of similar incidents happening to well-trained militaries, and regulated and AOC wall-papered civil operators.

Is there an RFM limitation to fly the Huey only from the right seat? We regularly fly the similar 212 single pilot from the left. There's a whole tolerated industry to fly passengers in warbirds, for some sanctioned compensation. Flying NAP is inviting disaster and to me has no place in joyrides, especially with a passenger's hands on the controls and the pilot turned around
to entertain the back seat passengers. Did the tragic flight deviate from the previously defined route, then loose or non-existent ops control.

Maybe at the end of the investigation it will end up like the Irish SAR 92, nobody at fault, just an accident.
The UH-1 series Operator Manuals (-10) require a minimum crew of one pilot in the right seat. I don't know if there is a left seat conversion for the UH-1B but from the video it appears that it is an unmodified military UH-1B.
In 34 years as an Army Aviator I have never heard the term NAP used to indicate NOE flight. I think the internet investigator who made the youtube video created it. The cockpit video appears to be low level/contour flight. I didn't see anything close to NOE (NAP?).
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Old 7th Jul 2022, 03:07
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Malabo,

In the scheme of things....which seat the PIC was sitting in is small potatoes to the list of other problems about the operation is going to see identified in the investigation.

A long time ago in my wild youth I was offered a Copilot job flying DC-4's from way down south into remote airstrips in the States hauling agriculture products.....well just one product.

The money was excellent an all tax free paid cash on the barrel head at the destination at the northern end.

When I opined that I was interested but did not have a DC-4 Type Rating.....and was given a very odd look by the guy offering the job.

He reminded me that if we ever got Ramp Checked....the very least of my worries would be not having a Type Rating.

That is an analogy for the situation extant for MarPat Aviation today.....the PIC could have been in the back seat with the passengers and it would not make much difference than what was going on.

For the record.....I passed on that DC-4 job....as the prospects of living in a very secure government owned housing facility was not very appealing.

MarPat better sound the Collision Alarm and Issue a Standby for Collision Warning to all Hands. What is coming is not going to be pleasant at all.
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Old 7th Jul 2022, 15:36
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Was there some regulatory problems with their Alouette's some years ago
ALOUETTE HELICOPTERS DECLARED ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS BY THE FAA
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Old 8th Jul 2022, 00:44
  #29 (permalink)  
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US Army mode of flight

Nap-of-the-earth (abbreviated NOE) is a type of very low-altitude flight course used by military aircraft to avoid enemy detection and attack in a high-threat environment. During NOE flight, geographical features are used as cover, exploiting valleys and folds in the terrain by flying in, rather than over, them.

just to clarify the gentleman did not make the term up, Been around for awhile.
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Old 8th Jul 2022, 03:18
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Originally Posted by SASless View Post
In the scheme of things....which seat the PIC was sitting in is small potatoes to the list of other problems about the operation is going to see identified in the investigation.
...
The list of other problems leads to a PIC in the wrong seat. If the FAA can't enforce the other things, sitting in the wrong seat becomes accepted. The system is broken and is overlooking issues that lead to easily preventable tragic accidents like this and K. Bryant. We're at a turning point, and the curve doesn't look good.
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Old 8th Jul 2022, 03:21
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N98F was certified in the Experimental-Exhibition category. The FAA rules are very clear about carrying passengers in aircraft that are in other than Standard Category. For Experimental-Exhibition? No passengers. Let's look in the FARs!

91.319
(a) No person may operate an aircraft that has an experimental certificate -


(1) For other than the purpose for which the certificate was issued; or
(2) Carrying persons or property for compensation or hire.

Notice that it doesn't say, "No passengers," but rather no persons for compensation or hire. So maaayyyyybe...could we stretch that a little and say that people who make a (ahem) "donation" become members of the organization and thus ersatz "crewmembers" and would then be allowed? You know, a little (wink-wink) "workaround," perhaps?

Nope! Because of that first part of 91.319 - that bit about the "purpose" for which n98F's certificate was issued. For that, we go to FAR 21. We find that there are eight different sub-categories of the "Experimental" certificate.

21.191
Experimental certificates are issued for the following purposes:


(blah blah blah)

(d) Exhibition. Exhibiting the aircraft's flight capabilities, performance, or unusual characteristics at air shows, motion picture, television, and similar productions, and the maintenance of exhibition flight proficiency, including (for persons exhibiting aircraft) flying to and from such air shows and productions.

Uh-oh. We don't see an allowance for paying-passengers-who-aren't-really-but-they-made-a-"donation"-and-so-we'll-call-them-crewmembers. Oops!

To carry passengers in a "warbird" - and it is permissible - the operator would have to have one of those Living History Flight Experience exemptions. And Marpat did not. Double-oops!

So we don't know what's going to happen here. The FAA may do nothing, as usual, other than going after the certificates of the guys that owned and operated that UH-1B. Or they may search and come down really hard on others that are giving "warbird" rides for money...err...I mean "donations." As always, the families of those who perished in the Huey are left to pursue civil claims.
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Old 8th Jul 2022, 04:50
  #32 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by havoc View Post
Nap-of-the-earth (abbreviated NOE) is a type of very low-altitude flight course used by military aircraft to avoid enemy detection and attack in a high-threat environment. During NOE flight, geographical features are used as cover, exploiting valleys and folds in the terrain by flying in, rather than over, them.

just to clarify the gentleman did not make the term up, Been around for awhile.
You are correct, NOE has been around since the mid-70's. Calling it NAP has not.
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Old 8th Jul 2022, 13:31
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Jim,

I am thinking we are saying the same thing but using different wording.

The danger that is coming is that the baby might get thrown out with the bath water if the FAA does not take a very careful and thoughtful approach to how Warbirds Groups operate.

Most are very well done and should not be tarred with a broad brush as a result of this tragedy.

Likewise....other groups need to consider how they are doing business and ensure they are not at risk of running afoul of the FAR's.



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Old 8th Jul 2022, 16:44
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The Collings Foundation B17 and Thunder City Lightning accident reports give an insight into some of the horrendous practices out there.
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Old 8th Jul 2022, 16:53
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Let he who be without Sin cast the first stone.....might apply here.
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Old 13th Jul 2022, 14:19
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NTSB Preliminary Report released. Looks like a wirestrike.
https://data.ntsb.gov/carol-repgen/a...ort/105306/pdf

National Transportation Safety Board
Aviation Accident Preliminary Report
Location: Amherstdale, WV Accident Number: ERA22FA279
Date & Time: June 22, 2022, 16:45 Local Registration: N98F
Aircraft: Bell UH-1B Injuries: 6 Fatal
Flight Conducted
Under: Part 91: General aviation - Other work use

On June 22, 2022, about 1645 eastern daylight time, a Bell UH-1B helicopter, N98F, was destroyed when it was involved in an accident in Amherstdale, West Virginia. The private pilot, two pilot rated passengers and three additional passengers were fatally injured. The helicopter was operated by MARPAT Aviation, LLC, as a Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 flight.
The flight was associated with the “7th Annual Huey Reunion” during which the operator gave passengers the opportunity to “fly” the former military helicopter with a “safety pilot” seated in the left front seat for a “required donation” or “ride” for a suggested donation. The accident flight was the last flight of the day, and the accident occurred about 15 minutes after departure from Logan County Airport (6L4), Logan, West Virginia. There were no known witnesses to the accident.

The helicopter impacted a rock face about 3.5 nautical miles east of 6L4 and came to rest partially inverted on its right side on an asphalt road. The wreckage spanned the 26-ft road and continued into a ditch at the base of a rock face. The main wreckage was 542 ft past a utility cable that crossed about 180 ft above the road. Two utility cables were fractured consistent with tensile overload and were displaced toward the main wreckage near the roadside at 220 ft and 397 ft from the remaining utility cable. All major components of the helicopter were located in the vicinity of the accident site. Examination of the wreckage revealed that the cockpit and cabin had impacted the road and a guardrail, and both were consumed by a postimpact fire. The empennage, composed of the tailboom, vertical fin, and horizontal stabilizer, remained attached to the aft fuselage. The right horizontal stabilizer was impact-deformed at its tip and the left horizontal stabilizer was intact. The vertical stabilizer and tail boom were wrinkled. The right landing skid was located adjacent to the aft fuselage; however, first responders stated that it was moved to facilitate rescue efforts. The left landing skid was located in the ditch. Additional wreckage including pieces of Plexiglas, the aft cap of the left skid, a section of a tail rotor blade and a rock with green paint transfer were observed about 40 ft above the wreckage on a ledge of the steep rock face.

Both main rotor blades remained attached to their respective grips and drag braces, which remained attached to the hub. The hub remained attached to the main rotor mast. The main gearbox was present in its normally installed area separated from the airframe. The input driveshaft was separated from both the main gearbox and the engine and was observed under the main gearbox. The leading edge spar of the white main rotor blade was continuous through the blade span with sections of afterbody that had separated from the blade located adjacent to it in the main wreckage. The leading edge spar of the red main rotor blade was continuous to the tip with a chordwise upward bend near the inboard side of the blade. The outboard half of the red main rotor blade exhibited leading edge deformation in the direction opposite of normal rotation and the afterbody in this section was fragmented into multiple pieces that were observed near the main wreckage. The main rotor controls were impact separated in multiple locations from the pitch change links to the swashplate and collective lever control tubes. The main rotor controls forward of the swashplate and collective lever control tubes were consumed by the postimpact fire.

The tail rotor drive train was continuous through the intermediate gearbox and impactseparated between the intermediate and tail rotor gearboxes; however, portions of the forward end were consumed by fire. The tail rotor gearbox input housing remained attached to the vertical fin and the tail rotor gearbox and tail rotor were located intact in the vicinity. Both tail rotor blades exhibited chordwise fractures near their doublers and the outboard portions of the blades were found in the vicinity of the main wreckage. One of the two tail rotor pitch change links was separated from its pitch horn and its hardware was not located. The tail rotor controls were impact separated in multiple locations from the tail rotor to the forward section of the tail boom. The tail rotor controls were consumed by the postimpact fire forward of the tail boom.

The engine remained attached to the engine mounts which were separated from the airframe. The engine gearbox was mostly consumed by the postimpact fire. The engine throttle was near the 100% setting; however, the engine throttle linkage was fractured near the left engine mount connection. Visual examination of the power turbine blades through the engine exhaust revealed that two non-consecutive blades were fractured near their roots and not present. A single power turbine blade of full length was present between the two missing blade locations. There was evidence of tip rubbing between the power turbine blades and the engine case. The wreckage was retained. The engine and the tail rotor controls were removed for further examination.
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