Helicopter UH-1D 66-00820


Information on U.S. Army helicopter UH-1D tail number 66-00820
The Army purchased this helicopter 1066
Total flight hours at this point: 00001799
Date: 08/12/1968 MIA-POW file reference number: 1247
Incident number: 680812241ACD Accident case number: 680812241 Total loss or fatality Accident
Unit: 191 AHC
The station for this helicopter was Bear Cat in South Vietnam
UTM grid coordinates: XS732703
Number killed in accident = 10 . . Injured = 0 . . Passengers = 6
costing 726554
Original source(s) and document(s) from which the incident was created or updated: Defense Intelligence Agency Reference Notes. Defense Intelligence Agency Helicopter Loss database. Army Aviation Safety Center database. Also: OPERA , 1247 (Operations Report. )
Loss to Inventory

Crew Members:
P CPT LUKE ARNOLD WAYNE KIA
CP WO1 JENS TERRY ROY JR KIA
CE SP5 WILSON GERALD ANTHONY KIA
G SP4 MONTION ARTURO DANIEL KIA

Passengers and/or other participants:
X2 NGUYEN TL, VS, PX, KIA
SGT DURRETT THADDEUS, AR, PX, KIA
SP4 FREEMAN BOBBY, AR, PX, KIA
SFC BERGAN MERLIN HERMAN, AR, PX, KIA
SSG TULLIER LONNIE JOSEPH, AR, PX, KIA
SGT MORTICE THOMAS E III, AR, PX, KIA


Accident Summary:

The aircraft departed Cougar pad, Bear Cat, RVN at 0730 12 Aug 68 enroute to XS 620759 to support the 1st Brigade, 9th Infantry Division. The company conducted normal missions in the area of operations and at approximately 1400 hours 12 Aug 68, the white flight, composed of five slick aircraft were proceeding from the area of operations to Tan An to refuel. Approximately four miles out of Tan An, CPT Luke, aircraft commander of white 5, (UH-1D 66-820), reported that he had a transmission chip detector light on. He then proceeded the flight into Tan An, refueled and shut down to determine the cause of the chip detector light being on. The other aircraft in the flight landed and remained on the ground for approximately twenty minutes, then the flight, including white 5 departed for Dong Tam. It could not be determined, from questioning the other aircraft crew members, what malfunction caused the chip detector light to come on or that any corrective action was taken. The white and yellow flights then proceeded to Dong Tam, shut down for approximately twenty minutes, then performed a combat assault operation in the 1st Brigade area of operation. The flight then returned to Dong Tam for a second lift, however, there were only six sorties required so four of the aircraft were released to return to Bear Cat. The flight picked up passengers that were returning to Bear Cat and white 5 loaded six passengers, then the flight departed for Bear Cat, at approximately 1650 hours. The flight was at 1500 feet in a diamond formation with white 5 in the slot. Approximately 10 minutes out of Dong Tam white 5 transmitted, "white 5 going down, tail rotor failure." the aircraft was observed to descend in a relatively level attitude with the main rotor turning very slowly. The number two aircraft in the formation, flown by aircraft commander CW2 Wiegman, broke from the formation and followed the aircraft down. The aircraft struck the ground in a slightly nose low attitude in a rice paddy with apparently very little forward motion. The aircraft commander and the pilot were pinned in the wreckage by the instrument panel. The passenger compartment was on fire. An attempt was made to extract the personnel from the burning wreckage and one passenger was removed but was apparently killed upon impact.

This record was last updated on 09/20/1998


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