Accident in Alabama

Items of interest regarding Brantly helicopters.

Moderator: Ron Spiker

Accident in Alabama

Postby Ron Spiker » Thu Apr 13, 2006 11:45 am

Registration database has the owner of this aircraft as Peter Spinelli of Madison, AL. Anyone know how bad he's hurt?

NTSB Identification: ATL06LA059
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 01, 2006 in Cullman, AL
Aircraft: Brantly Helicopter B2B, registration: N2183U
Injuries: 1 Serious.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed.

On April 1, 2006, at 1802 central standard time, a Brantley B2B, N2183U, registered to a private owner, operating as a 14 CFR Part 91 personal flight, collided with telephone wires while maneuvering in the vicinity of Cullman, Alabama. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed. A post crash fire destroyed the helicopter. The private pilot received serious injuries. The flight originated from a private heliport in Madison, Alabama, on April 1, 2006, at an undetermined time. The helicopter was enroute to a private heliport in Cullman, Alabama.

A witness who driving his truck west bound in the vicinity of Cullman, Alabama stated he observed a helicopter flying east bound over County Road 222 between 100 to 200 feet above the ground. The helicopter flew over his truck and started a descent as if it was going to land. The driver pulled over and turned his vehicle around to watch the helicopter. The helicopter leveled off between 30 to 40 feet above the ground and collided with some telephone wires. The witness stated he believes the pilot lost control of the helicopter just before the collision,. The nose of the helicopter pitched down and the helicopter collided with the ground near a highway guardrail and rolled over on its right side.

Another witness who was in his back yard with his son. They heard the helicopter approaching their location. The helicopter was flying eastbound across County Road 222 near a creek in the vicinity of Whitlock's General Store. The witness thought the pilot was following a creek in preparation for landing at a private helipad where a mechanic is known to perform maintenance on helicopters. The helicopter was observed to start a descent. The helicopter was at about 30 feet above the ground when the witness heard a change in engine noise. The witness stated the helicopter collided with telephone lines, the nose pitched down, and the helicopter disappeared from view. He immediately informed his wife to call the 911 emergency operators and he and his son went to the crash site. The helicopter was on fire, and he heard someone ask for a knife. He went over to the helicopter and cut the pilot's seat belt and the pilot was removed from the burning wreckage.

The girlfriend of the injured pilot arrived at the accident site shortly after the accident. She stated the pilot was taking the helicopter to a private heliport in the immediate area so an annual inspection could be performed on the helicopter.
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