Information on U.S. Army helicopter UH-1D tail number 66-16061
The Army purchased this helicopter 0267
Total flight hours at this point: 00000213
Incident number: 680102033ACD Accident case number: 680102033 Total loss or fatality Accident
Unit: C/3/17 CAV
The station for this helicopter was Di An in
Number killed in accident = 1 . . Injured = 2 . . Passengers = 0
Source(s) from which the incident was created or updated: Army Aviation Safety Center database.
AC W1 TL METCALFE
P W1 WM MCELROY
CE E4 E PINCKNEY
G PFC NICHOLS ERNEST JAMES JR KIA
PP WO1 JACOBUS WILLIAM THOMAS KIA
Aircraft involved were UH-1C 66-686, UH-1D 66-16061, and UH-1D 66-16036. Aircraft 686 was on a night approach to an unlighted dusty airfield with nine aircraft parked with blades tied. While terminating approach, 686 went IFR in dust and flew between 061 and 063. 686's tail rotor struck main rotor blade of 036 knocking off 686's tail rotor causing it to spin right. Tail boom then struck tail boom of 061. Flight terminated with 686 lying on left side 180 degrees from direction of landing and right of 061.
A number of helicopters from different units were arriving at Katum Airfield during the night of 01/02 Jan 68 in response to the attack on FSB BURT. UH-1C 66-00686 and others from the 68th AHC departed for Katum at 0305H. On arrival they found the afld to be uncontrolled with numerous acft coming and going. On its fourth attempt (first 3 waved off due to traffic and/or heavy blowing dust) UH-1C 66-00686 made an approach to the southern end of the runway, lost visibility in blowing dust, and collided with UH-1H 66-16061. UH-1C 66-00686's main rotor chopped through 66-16061's cargo compartment, killing NICHOLS instantly, fatally injuring JACOBUS, and inflicting lesser injuries on several others who were sitting in 66-16061. Jacobus's legs were severed and he died later that day in a hospital. He was one of the pilots of 66-16036. LAKIN was thrown from 66-00686's door gunner position and and 686 subsequently came to rest on top of him. Another helo, UH-1H 66-16036, was struck by 0686's rotor blade but no injuries resulted.
This record was last updated on 02/05/2008
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Date posted on this site: 09/23/2017
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