Accident Brief, Occurrence # 07/324

Registration:  ZK-HFF Nature of Flight:  TRAINING DUAL
Aircraft Model:  Robinson R22 Beta Pilot Licence:  CPL (Helicopter)
Date and Time:  09 Feb 07 at 01:30 Pilot Age:  44 yrs
Location:  Whangarei Harbour Flying Hours (Total):  910
POB:  2 Flying Hours (on Type):  875
Injuries (Fatal):  nil Last 90 Days:  90
Injuries (Serious):  nil TAIC Ref.:  
Injuries (Minor):  nil Publishing Ref.:  Vector Sep/Oct 07
Damage:  Substantial Date Published:  26 Jul 07


The helicopter was being utilised for training and had just turned crosswind out of the climb from the active runway when a jolt was felt, followed immediately by rotor rpm decrease. The instructor initiated an autorotation into the surrounding harbour, from which both instructor and student managing to escape without injury. CAA investigation of the accident found that the transmission drive belts had failed. Tests were conducted on the one recovered section of belt, and the drive belt clutch actuator assembly, but no reason for the belt failure could be determined.