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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 189479
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Type:Silhouette image of generic EXEC model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Rotorway Executive 90
Registration: G-BRGX
MSN: 3597
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Commonswood Farm, Horns Cross, near Northiam, East Sussex -   United Kingdom
Phase: Initial climb
Departure airport:Commonswood Farm, Horns Cross, near Northiam, East Sussex
Destination airport:Commonswood Farm, Horns Cross, near Northiam, East Sussex
Investigating agency: AAIB
Written off (destroyed by fire) 12-05-2006 at Commonswood Farm, Horns Cross, near Northiam, East Sussex. Smoke in cockpit during climb out. Aircraft entered auto-rotation phase, landed heavily and was destroyed by fire. Of the two persons on board (pilot and one passenger) the pilot sustained minor burn injuries to his arm, and the passenger sustained a grazed knee. According to the following excerpt from the official AAIB report into the accident:

"As the pilot established a cruise climb, at about 800 feet agl, he had the first indication of smoke in the cabin, and he therefore started a gentle turn back to the departure point. The indications strengthened, so he increased the turn rate and initiated a descent which he turned into an auto-rotation in anticipation that the engine might fail.

He could now feel the heat from the engine bay, so he increased speed to 80 mph from the normal 60 mph auto-rotation speed, and, passing 300 feet, he started an S turn for a run-on landing.

At about 50 ft agl, as he started to flare, the cockpit filled with smoke, obscuring forward visibility and the instruments, and all he could now do was execute the run-on landing in this condition. The aircraft bounced once gently, and skidded forward before coming to rest with the right (passenger side) skid collapsed, and the tail boom separated, but the helicopter remained upright.

The passenger evacuated through a hole in the front canopy without injury, whilst the pilot exited through the left door with a slight burn to his left arm. The aircraft was beyond salvage, so it was left to burn out. The extent of the fire was so severe, that any meaningful examination to establish the cause was precluded, however the pilot does not rule out the possibility that spillage of fuel during the refueling could have pooled in the belly pan, and he is certain the fire was fuel-based because of its rapid progression".

Nature of Damage sustained to airframe: As per the AAIB report above, "Aircraft destroyed" due to the fire on board being left burn itself out consuming the airframe in the process. As a result, the registration G-BRGX was cancelled by the CAA on 12-12-2006


1. AAIB:
2. CAA:

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: AAIB
Status: Investigation completed
Download report: Final report

Revision history:

23-Aug-2016 19:18 Dr.John Smith Added
17-Dec-2018 16:23 harro Updated [Plane category]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description

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