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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 45316
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Type:Silhouette image of generic A109 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Agusta A109K2
Owner/operator:IHC Life Flight
Registration: N601RX
MSN: 10017
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 3
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Salt Lake City, UT -   United States of America
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:Salt Lake City, UT
Destination airport:Wendover, UT
Investigating agency: NTSB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
While maneuvering low to the ground during night conditions, the air ambulance helicopter encountered fog and poor weather conditions, and impacted the terrain. Shortly after departing from its hospital base, the helicopter was cleared by air traffic control to proceed through a major airport's airspace to respond to a medical emergency. After crossing through the airspace, the pilot elected to abort the mission; however, he was instructed by air traffic control to hold and wait for clearance through the airspace due to landing traffic at the airport. After holding for approximately 10 minutes, the pilot stated, "I'm basically inadvertent IMC at this time and declaring emergency...I'm currently on a heading one five zero." Examination of the accident site revealed the helicopter impacted the terrain on a heading of 150 degrees, became airborne for approximately 1/4 mile, then impacted the terrain and came to rest upright in a grassy field. According to documents provided by the operator, the pilot had accumulated a total of 311 simulated instrument flight time, and 3 hours of actual instrument flight time. Examination of the helicopter revealed no evidence of an in-flight control or system malfunction prior to the initial impact. Prior to the accident helicopter's departure from the hospital base, another air ambulance company helicopter attempted the same mission; however, aborted the mission due to fog and deteriorating weather conditions.'

Probable Cause: The pilot's delayed remedial action and continued flight into known adverse weather conditions which resulted in his failure to maintain clearance with the ground. Contributing factors were the prevailing fog, and the pressure to complete the mission induced by the pilot in command as a result of the air ambulance operation. Pilot and paramedic killed and a nurse seriously injured.


Air International FEB 2003



Revision history:

28-Oct-2008 00:45 ASN archive Added
07-Feb-2009 10:37 harro Updated
27-Jan-2010 09:54 Alpine Flight Updated [Aircraft type, Other fatalities]
01-Mar-2015 19:19 Aerossurance Updated [Source]
21-Dec-2016 19:24 ASN Update Bot Updated [Time, Damage, Category, Investigating agency]
08-Dec-2017 18:02 ASN Update Bot Updated [Operator, Nature, Source, Narrative]
28-Dec-2020 17:20 TB Updated [Operator, Source, Narrative]
10-Jan-2022 08:09 Aerossurance Updated [Nature, Source, Embed code, Narrative]

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