Copter Crash Construction Catastrophe
The question is should helicopters be used as aerial cranes in construction?
Helicopters are prone to the vortex ring state (fatally settling into their own downwash), Low-G condition, Dynamic rollover and tail rotor failure, ground resonance, not to mention a serious state of vibration, (among other problems.)
Using helicopters to carry loads connected to long cables or slings to relocate heavy equipment such as large air conditioning units on tall buildings is asking for trouble.
It is not surprising that the aerial crane helicopter crashed at the Willow Island Power this weekend. The pilot was in the process of his fifth lift of the day when he started spinning and the tail rotor came off. The pilot dropped his load but managed to crash land with his props bent up, on a coal heap.
The FAAâ€™s FSDO office is investigating the incident. The St. Louis Helicopter Company pilot’s name has not been released.