Helicopter Crash Investigation Uncovers Evidence of Bird Strike

Federal investigators have recently released a preliminary report on a devastating helicopter crash that resulted in the loss of three Air Evac crew members. The report highlights an intriguing piece of evidence, suggesting a possible bird strike as a contributing factor.

While the report does not provide a definitive cause for the accident, investigators found several dead geese near the crash site in a rural pasture in western Oklahoma. Furthermore, they discovered the remains of another goose embedded in a flight control mechanism, which controls the movement of the helicopter’s flight control surfaces.

Intriguingly, this new information challenges the prevailing notion that bird activity in the area was considered low. The U.S. Air Force’s Avian Hazard Advisory System had classified the probability of bird activity as low, but the presence of the deceased geese suggests otherwise.

The investigation is ongoing, and authorities are keen to conduct a comprehensive analysis of the helicopter to gather any additional insights. Numerous components of the Bell 206 helicopter’s propulsion system, including the transmission, main rotor hub, and blades, were found scattered around the crash site. Notably, one of the blades was discovered in a neighboring field.

It is worth noting that the final report, which will provide a more comprehensive understanding of the incident, will take several months if not years to complete. However, this preliminary evidence emphasizes the importance of thoroughly examining all aspects of the crash, including the possibility of a bird strike.

As the investigation continues, it is crucial to determine the exact sequence of events leading to this tragic accident. By doing so, aviation authorities can implement necessary measures to prevent similar incidents in the future.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

1. What is the main focus of the recently released preliminary report?
The main focus of the report is a helicopter crash that resulted in the loss of three Air Evac crew members.

2. What evidence suggests a possible contributing factor to the crash?
The report highlights the discovery of dead geese near the crash site and the remains of another goose embedded in the helicopter’s flight control mechanism, implying a possible bird strike as a contributing factor.

3. What contradicts the prevailing notion about bird activity in the area?
The presence of the deceased geese challenges the classification by the U.S. Air Force’s Avian Hazard Advisory System that rated the probability of bird activity as low.

4. What parts of the helicopter’s propulsion system were found scattered around the crash site?
Components such as the transmission, main rotor hub, and blades of the Bell 206 helicopter were found scattered around the crash site, with one blade even discovered in a neighboring field.

5. When can we expect the final report?
The final report, providing a more comprehensive understanding of the incident, will likely take several months, if not years, to complete.

Definitions:

– Bird strike: A collision between a bird and an aircraft during flight, which can cause damage to the aircraft and pose a safety risk.
– Flight control mechanism: The system used to control the movement of an aircraft’s flight control surfaces that enable the pilot to maneuver the aircraft.

Suggested Related Links:

1. FAA – Wildlife Aircraft Strike
2. Bird Strike Committee USA
3. Bell Flight