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Fatal Accident at Nowra

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  • Fatal Accident at Nowra

    Condolences to the family and friendshttp://www.centralwesterndaily.com.au/story/2153217/video-man-killed-in-gyrocopter-crash/?cs=2452#slide=1

  • #2
    Our hearts & prayers to the family.

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    • #3
      Really sad what happened anyone know ?

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      • #4
        Gents,Onsite look about complete. Under scrutiny: wind, gyro, pilot. We have complete footage of the flight from a Go -Pro type VCR. Police looking at Iphone for GPS data. No conclusions yet. All others of the same type "grounded" as a precaution. Definitely not insinuating a problem with the design at this point. Don"t jump to conclusions and don"t read too much into what has been, or will be said on other forums. Thanks.Allan.

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        • #5
          Gents,Onsite look about complete. Under scrutiny: wind, gyro, pilot. We have complete footage of the flight from a Go -Pro type VCR. Police looking at Iphone for GPS data. No conclusions yet. All others of the same type "grounded" as a precaution. Definitely not insinuating a problem with the design at this point. Don"t jump to conclusions and don"t read too much into what has been, or will be said on other forums. Thanks.Allan.Thanks Allan.Aussie Paul.

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          • #6
            Any updates on what happened here?

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            • #7
              Hi Skygazer,The investigation is long closed and the NSW Coroner has the report. The gyro was a "Gyroz" and it was established that a bracket clamped to the keel on an angle intended to retain the rudder end of a flex cable setup had loosened and was sometimes pivoting rearward of its proper position. There was also evidence that the owner did not rigorously undertake maintenance and inspections, and furthermore had complained to associates in the month leading up to the fatality that he was having a lot of trouble with directional control. Astonishingly, it seems that the owner did not do any fault-finding or inspections to see what could have been compromising the directional control. The effect of the loose clamp was that the trailing edges of the twin rudders continually tended to pivot to the right, meaning that the Gyroz always wanted to yaw to the right, and that it is likely that pushing the left rudder pedal to its stop only barely managed to yaw it left, and it also seems likely that to just keep it straight he was probably using 80 to 90 percent of left rudder pedal travel. Turns to the left were still possible because he simply rolled the rotor to the left and a turn commenced, however the video evidence shows that even during such turns the right yawing tendency of the gyro fuselage remained. The video shows that left banked turns were awkward.Notwithstanding that the defect was blindingly obvious, and would have been blindingly obvious to any owner who understood the operation of his gyroplane even at the most basic level, on the day of the fatal flight he took off with the machine showing a very obvious tendency to yaw to the right, then proceeded to deliberately and illegally fly over a new housing estate at 200 to 250 feet agl, sometimes undertaking strained shallow turns to the left and sometimes letting the gyro yaw to the right as it wanted, supplementing the yaw tendency by also using slight right bank. The handling was clearly compromised, and any prudent pilot would have set it down on the runway in the circumstances and not flown.Nevertheless, he then headed for open paddocks about a kilometer from the housing estate with the gyro still showing a clear tendency to yaw right. On all but the final occasion he managed to bring the nose more or less back to pointed roughly forward. The final yaw started at about 400 feet and 50-60 knots and did not correct, with the gyro essentially turning completely sideways to the right, simultaneously rolling 90 degrees over to the left and dropping its tail at the same time. It basically then kept yawing from the tail down attitude as it plummeted, yawing about 180 degrees to being virtually nose down at time of impact. Significantly, the video shows the rotor slowing from about 320 rpm to less than 90 in about 2 1/2 seconds - this was because the incoming airflow during the turning sideways and rolling was coming into the rotor from above. Autorotation had ceased early in the roll and the airflow coming unnaturally through the top of the rotor acted as a harsh brake. His death was absolutely senseless and totally preventable with a minimum of maintenance.The 2 other Gyroz"s on the register were immediately grounded, then a replacement bracket design was swiftly implemented by ASRA and required to be immediately retrofitted to the other 2 Gyroz"s. The "fix" involved the retrofitting of a new design bracket incapable of pivoting in the way the fatality machine"s clamp had been doing. The other 2 Gyroz"s original clamps were not loose and not capable of pivoting or moving, but the new bracket design completely eliminated that possibility.Obviously, the most infuriating thing about this particular accident was that the problem with the clamp had developed gradually and would or should have been completely obvious to any responsible and prudent gyro owner. The fact that the owner was complaining to others about his compromised directional control should have rung alarm bells in his mind. That is truly alarming. That he set out on the day of his death with a seriously compromised gyroplane and deliberately flew over a housing estate at low level is absolutely culpable and reprehensible.The evidence strongly suggests that the now-deceased owner had little understanding of gyroplane dynamic safety issues and scant concern for inspections and maintenance. The fact that he didn"t "fault find" in the weeks beforehand is truly shocking.Had the owner survived and we had got our hands on the video evidence, his pilot certificate would have been immediately cancelled and more than likely would have been liable to dismissal from the organization.That"s what happened.If you sense a condemnatory tone in this post then you"re absolutely right. ASRA will NOT tolerate a slapdash approach to maintenance and inspections, and further absolutely will not tolerate illegal low flying over closely bunched up houses of the kind he engaged in. If anyone who knew the deceased personally reads this and becomes upset, then so be it. His colourful life ended unnecessarily in March 2014 and there is no sense in covering up the truth of what happened out of a misguided sense of not speaking ill of the dead.Mark ReganASRA Technical Manager

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              • #8
                Good post Mark.I dont know of the incident, dont know who it was but do know the type of machine.You, asra and gyro nuts generaly have every rite to be p1ssed off.I feel for those he left behind.He,s gon coz he was lazy and had the " she,ll be rite" attitude.He forgot he was PIC.If you dont take this seriously, youll be the PIK ( person itll kill)

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                • #9
                  Yep Birdy, you hit the nail on the head, for sure.Aviation is an utterly uncompromising environment, and to fail to rectify the most blindingly obvious defect is reprehensible.On a lighter note, I didn"t have time to interrogate Jeff Blunt on what Air Vice-Marshal Turnbull was asking him about at the ASRA lineup at Avalon yesterday, but it wouldn"t surprise me in the least if he was asking .... "Now, who"s this amazing pilot Birdy I keep on hearing about?"Mark R

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                  • #10
                    On a lighter note, I didn"t have time to interrogate Jeff Blunt on what Air Vice Marshal Turnbull was asking him about at the ASRA lineup at Avalon yesterday, but it wouldn"t surprise me in the least if he was asking .... "Now, who"s this amazing pilot Birdy I keep on hearing about?"Mark RThat "Birdy" bloke keeps himself under wraps all too well !! although he does come out occasionally & gives us a glimpse of that brilliance .You could do a full airshow with only Birdy & Jacko & people would pay to see it. I can see the headlines now

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                    • #11
                      MadDog would be a ripper too

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