News Helicopter Crash in New Zealand

ky

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Not exactlly major news, but I still want to post this.

AUCKLAND, New Zealand — A helicopter helping install a Christmas tree on Auckland's waterfront has crashed in dramatic fashion, but the pilot escaped serious injury.
Footage captured by Television New Zealand on Wednesday shows the pilot slowly descending from about 25 feet (8 meters) when the chopper's blades appear to get caught in cables attached to scaffolding. The rear of the helicopter snaps and the pilot is tossed about as the helicopter smashes into the ground.
The television station reports that pilot Greg Gribble, who has 20 years experience, says he's "doing fine" after his ordeal.

Viideo of the crash:

Source:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/22/new-zealand-helicopter-crash_n_1108816.html
 

Quick_Nick

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The pilot seems pretty lucky the helicopter crashed tail (well, rear) first. It clearly compressed a lot and absorbed a lot of that impact. (and then rebounded..pretty sturdy frame)
 

Artlav

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The tail fell off easily, almost as if it was designed to.
Was it, or it's a design flaw?
 

Richy

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I think this is just because of a tremendous leverage effect on the pitch axis (after the main rotor blades separated), for which the tail isn't constructed. You can also see in the video the separation of the main gear box (including main rotor assembly) due to the enormous unbalance at the main rotor shaft.
 

APDAF

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That worker at the bottom was lucky not to get turned to goo.
 

Ark

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I see the huge imbalance in the blade assembly, but why did it crumple in the middle? It looks like it demolished the gearbox and/or engine mounting, but would that fold up the driveshaft to the tail rotor?

Anyway, that whole idea was dumb. Use a bloody crane like normal people.
 

Moach

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:probe: almighty! - that was some crash, indeed

i wonder how one tries to explain that in the insurance form..... :facts: :facepalm:

perhaps with:
"a tall metal struture inadvertedly intersected rotor disk... however, it refused to allow the spinning rotor blades pass through - a brief but violent disagreement took place in which the helicopter was forced to participate... non-trivial damage was received by it"

hmm.... still, i don't think that's gonna stick... :shifty:

well friends - at times like these we can't help but reflect on the irrefutable premiss that real life does indeed feature collision detection :uhh:


:j/k: -- good thing nobody was injured :rolleyes:
 

Notebook

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Remarkable, and good luck for the pilot.

N.
 

Urwumpe

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Ark

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Excuse me, but isn't rule number 1 with helicopters and planes in general...

DON'T GO ANYWHERE NEAR CABLES!!!

"I'm dreaming of a sliiiiiiced, Christmas..."

Clearly the solution is to sharpen the blades so obstacles are no longer a problem.
 

Urwumpe

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Clearly the solution is to sharpen the blades so obstacles are no longer a problem.

If you would sharpen the skills of the pilot, this would be much better. Maneuvering so close to obstacles is not a showcase of his piloting, but of his lack of situation awareness.
 

FADEC

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And this is why I don't like helicopters. The rotors just have to get in contact with something and that's it. Especially the tail rotor is quite sensitive and once damaged you are out of control.


Same case here (at 3 seconds):

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZjnAr-3nak&feature=related"]helicopter crash. watch the guy fall out. fatal - YouTube[/ame]
 

Codz

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Urwumpe

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You have to include that in the first video, the helicopter was clearly no naval helicopter and the pilot and the crew not making the impression that they trained this. Looks like they had been surprised by the strong winds when the last hook to the net was released (The rotor lift is different depending on the wind direction, because of the blades)

Real naval helicopters use a different way to remain connected to the flight deck, such accidents are pretty rare there.

Again, largely a matter of pilot training. But ground crew as well, they released the connections possibly in the wrong order (I only know central supports)
 
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FADEC

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You have to include that in the first video, the helicopter was clearly no naval helicopter and the pilot and the crew not making the impression that they trained this. Looks like they had been surprised by the strong winds when the last hook to the net was released (The rotor lift is different depending on the wind direction, because of the blades).

I'm surprised they even use the helicopter during a (relatively) rough sea. Aren't there restrictions? The entire scene just looks scary from the beginning, even if you don't know the title of the video and what you are going to see.
 

Urwumpe

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I'm surprised they even use the helicopter during a (relatively) rough sea. Aren't there restrictions? The entire scene just looks scary from the beginning, even if you don't know the title of the video and what you are going to see.

Not that many, the sea state was sure not a deal there (it was rather calm there). It isn't that scary from the conditions if you are used to naval pilots, but it seems like the hardware and crew had been on their competence limits.

Look here, how German military pilots do that with proper helicopters:


(Bad music, great video)

Note how the helicopter hunches down on its landing gear after landing: It is really pushing itself down to stay on the deck.
 
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