|37000 Feet||Browse and search NASA's
Aviation Safety Reporting System
|Local Time Of Day||1201 To 1800|
|Locale Reference||atc facility : e129|
airport : ei292
|Altitude||msl bound lower : 100|
msl bound upper : 100
|Operator||general aviation : corporate|
|Make Model Name||Helicopter|
|Flight Phase||climbout : takeoff|
|Function||flight crew : captain|
oversight : pic
|Qualification||pilot : commercial|
pilot : instrument
|Experience||flight time last 90 days : 179|
flight time total : 9608
flight time type : 385
|Function||flight crew : first officer|
|Qualification||pilot : commercial|
|Anomaly||other anomaly other|
|Independent Detector||other flight crewa|
|Resolutory Action||none taken : detected after the fact|
|Primary Problem||Flight Crew Human Performance|
|Air Traffic Incident||other|
The helicopter made a normal approach and landing on EI292, a forest oil platform 90 NM southeast of intracoastal city, la. The winds were 190 degrees at 5 KTS. The aircraft, at a hover, was pivoted to the northeast and set down on the platform in order to facilitate loading and refueling. During lift off to a hover a bump was noticed, as if the tail boom stinger had made contact with the deck. At a hover the aircraft was stable and no unusual vibrations were felt in any of the controls. The aircraft was flown to another platform and made a normal approach to landing west/O incident or unusual vibrations. When both throttles were retarded to idle, a definite vibration in the tail rotor pedals became apparent. The aircraft was shut down and the tail rotor was found to have sustained minor damage. Maintenance was called and the next day they replaced the tail rotor after completing the associated proper inspections. EI292 has 2 hazards to tail rotors located next to and above the level of the landing surface. One is an anemometer, the other is a piece of pipe which protrudes approximately 18' above the heliport deck. It was this pipe which the tail rotor apparently contacted. In my opinion the incident has several causes. Of primary importance is the proximity of the hazards to the heliport. No object should extend above the level of the landing surface closely enough to present a danger to the aircraft. Ideally, helicopters used in the offshore environment should be designed with completely shrouded tail rotors, use the notar system, or have the tail rotor mounted upon a pylon above the tail boom. The final responsibility for the safe operation of the aircraft, of course, always rests with the pilot. In this case, the pilot should have landed further from the obstruction. Failing this, the pilot should have noticed and corrected the error prior to takeoff. This could have been accomplished by sliding the aircraft away from the hazard. An uneventful takeoff could have then been executed.
Original NASA ASRS Text
Title: DURING LIFT-OFF AND DEP THE HELICOPTER PLATFORM THE TAIL ROTOR STRUCK AN OBJECT ON THE PLATFORM. FLT CONTINUED TO THE NEXT PLATFORM.
Narrative: THE HELI MADE A NORMAL APCH AND LNDG ON EI292, A FOREST OIL PLATFORM 90 NM SE OF INTRACOASTAL CITY, LA. THE WINDS WERE 190 DEGS AT 5 KTS. THE ACFT, AT A HOVER, WAS PIVOTED TO THE NE AND SET DOWN ON THE PLATFORM IN ORDER TO FACILITATE LOADING AND REFUELING. DURING LIFT OFF TO A HOVER A BUMP WAS NOTICED, AS IF THE TAIL BOOM STINGER HAD MADE CONTACT WITH THE DECK. AT A HOVER THE ACFT WAS STABLE AND NO UNUSUAL VIBRATIONS WERE FELT IN ANY OF THE CONTROLS. THE ACFT WAS FLOWN TO ANOTHER PLATFORM AND MADE A NORMAL APCH TO LNDG W/O INCIDENT OR UNUSUAL VIBRATIONS. WHEN BOTH THROTTLES WERE RETARDED TO IDLE, A DEFINITE VIBRATION IN THE TAIL ROTOR PEDALS BECAME APPARENT. THE ACFT WAS SHUT DOWN AND THE TAIL ROTOR WAS FOUND TO HAVE SUSTAINED MINOR DAMAGE. MAINT WAS CALLED AND THE NEXT DAY THEY REPLACED THE TAIL ROTOR AFTER COMPLETING THE ASSOCIATED PROPER INSPECTIONS. EI292 HAS 2 HAZARDS TO TAIL ROTORS LOCATED NEXT TO AND ABOVE THE LEVEL OF THE LNDG SURFACE. ONE IS AN ANEMOMETER, THE OTHER IS A PIECE OF PIPE WHICH PROTRUDES APPROX 18' ABOVE THE HELIPORT DECK. IT WAS THIS PIPE WHICH THE TAIL ROTOR APPARENTLY CONTACTED. IN MY OPINION THE INCIDENT HAS SEVERAL CAUSES. OF PRIMARY IMPORTANCE IS THE PROX OF THE HAZARDS TO THE HELIPORT. NO OBJECT SHOULD EXTEND ABOVE THE LEVEL OF THE LNDG SURFACE CLOSELY ENOUGH TO PRESENT A DANGER TO THE ACFT. IDEALLY, HELIS USED IN THE OFFSHORE ENVIRONMENT SHOULD BE DESIGNED WITH COMPLETELY SHROUDED TAIL ROTORS, USE THE NOTAR SYS, OR HAVE THE TAIL ROTOR MOUNTED UPON A PYLON ABOVE THE TAIL BOOM. THE FINAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE SAFE OPERATION OF THE ACFT, OF COURSE, ALWAYS RESTS WITH THE PLT. IN THIS CASE, THE PLT SHOULD HAVE LANDED FURTHER FROM THE OBSTRUCTION. FAILING THIS, THE PLT SHOULD HAVE NOTICED AND CORRECTED THE ERROR PRIOR TO TKOF. THIS COULD HAVE BEEN ACCOMPLISHED BY SLIDING THE ACFT AWAY FROM THE HAZARD. AN UNEVENTFUL TKOF COULD HAVE THEN BEEN EXECUTED.
Data retrieved from NASA's ASRS site as of August 2007 and automatically converted to unabbreviated mixed upper/lowercase text. This report is for informational purposes with no guarantee of accuracy. See NASA's ASRS site for official report.