ASN logo
ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 227708
Last updated: 17 September 2021
This information is added by users of ASN. Neither ASN nor the Flight Safety Foundation are responsible for the completeness or correctness of this information. If you feel this information is incomplete or incorrect, you can submit corrected information.

Time:08:18 LT
Type:Silhouette image of generic AS50 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Aerospatiale AS 350B Ecureuil
Owner/operator:SGC Saga Aviation Co Ltd
Registration: JA9252
MSN: 1238
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Kuchido, Chikusei city, Ibaraki Prefecture -   Japan
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:Temporary Helipad in Chikusei city
Destination airport:Temporary Helipad in Chikusei city
Investigating agency: JTSB
An Aérospatiale AS350B, registered JA9252, was scheduled to perform 17 pesticide spray runs.
At around 05:12 Japan Standard Time, the rotorcraft took off for the first pesticide spray operation. The captain intended to get the pesticide spray work done by around 08:00 when there would be increasing numbers of people coming and going; however, when the captain started the flight, the work was running behind schedule due to poor visibility caused by haze.
After finishing the 10th operation, the haze started to clear away, therefore, the captain started getting conscious of recovering from the delay. In addition, the captain thought he should be careful about the backlighting because the sun was coming out as the haze was clearing away.
After taking off from the helipad for the 15th pesticide spray operation at around 08:14, the rotorcraft turned right to a heading of southeast (with a horizontal angle of about 45° right from the sun direction) in order to avoid the flight route facing the sun, and started pesticide spraying at an airspeed of about 30 kt, about 12 m Above Ground Level (AGL). After the pesticide spray toward southeast was done, the captain intended to turn right to reverse at the paddy field right before the one that was located directly below the power lines.
As the captain visually recognized the power lines ahead on the left side in a position slightly higher and a short range while flying for spraying pesticide, he applied cyclic stick to the right aft immediately in order to avoid contact with the power line. And at that time, the captain felt something wrong as if the main rotor blades had contacted with the power lines and he thought the rotorcraft had lost its balance, but he did not remember anything after the evasive maneuver, and found himself in the cockpit that had crashed with its nose up and it’s warning alarm was sounding. After shutting off the warning device and the electrical systems, the captain evacuated from the rotorcraft.

It is highly probable that in this accident, as the rotorcraft was coming close to the power lines while flying for a pesticide spray, the captain tried to perform an evasive maneuver just in front of the power lines, but a part of its airframe contacted with a power line, the rotorcraft lost its balance and crashed.
It is probable that the rotorcraft came close to the power lines because the captain failed to change direction at the right position to make a 180° turn.

Sources: (photo)

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: JTSB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 2 months
Download report: Final report


Photo: JTSB

Revision history:

29-Jul-2019 07:15 gerard57 Added
29-Jul-2019 07:37 Aerossurance Updated [Aircraft type, Cn, Operator, Source, Embed code]
29-Jul-2019 07:41 Aerossurance Updated [Source, Narrative]
29-Jul-2019 07:43 RobertMB Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Location, Source, Embed code, Narrative]
29-Jul-2019 07:52 Aerossurance Updated [Aircraft type, Source, Embed code, Narrative]
29-Jul-2019 10:40 isamuel Updated [Time, Location, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
29-Jul-2019 14:37 Iceman 29 Updated [Embed code]
29-Jul-2019 14:38 Iceman 29 Updated [Narrative]
27-Sep-2020 13:49 harro Updated [Time, Destination airport, Narrative, Category, Accident report, Photo]
27-Sep-2020 13:50 harro Updated [Embed code]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description