Helicopter OH-58A 68-16844


Information on U.S. Army helicopter OH-58A tail number 68-16844
The Army purchased this helicopter 0270
Total flight hours at this point: 00000126
Date: 04/29/1970
Incident number: 700429271ACD Accident case number: 700429271 Total loss or fatality Accident
Unit: C/3/17 CAV
The station for this helicopter was Di An in South Vietnam
Number killed in accident = 1 . . Injured = 1 . . Passengers = 0
costing 160102
Original source(s) and document(s) from which the incident was created or updated: Defense Intelligence Agency Helicopter Loss database. Army Aviation Safety Center database. Also: OPERA (Operations Report. )
Loss to Inventory

Crew Members:
P CW2 CANNON WILLARD SPARKS III KIA
OB E5 J THIGPEN
CE E5 L BLAKSTED


Accident Summary:

 THE AIRCRAFT WAS AN ELEMENT OF A HUNTER/KILLER TEAM CONSISTING OF AN OH-58A AND AN AH-1G. THIS TEAM DEPARTED DI AN, RVN AT 0730 HOURS ENROUTE TO XUAN LEC, RVN WITH A MISSION TO PROVIDE RECONNAISSANCE FOR THE 199TH LIGHT INFANTRY BRIGADE. THE TEAM ARRIVED IN XUAN LOC AND REFUELED THEN WENT ON STANDBY UNTIL ABOUT 1030 HOURS. AT ABOUT 1030 HOURS, THE TEAM DEPARTED FOR A FIRE SUPPORT BASE TO THE NE OF XUAN LEC. UPON ARRIVAL, THE TEAM LANDED BUT THEN TOOK OFF AGAIN AS A CH-47 WAS READY TO DEPART AND THEY WISHED TO AVOID THE TURBULANCE. WHILE ON CLIMB OUT, THE AH-1G WAS DIVERTED TO COVER AN INSERTION. THE OH-58A PILOT CLIMBED TO 3000 FEET TO INFORM HIS OPERATIONS OF THE CHANGE IN MISSION AND THAT HE WOULD REMAIN ON STATION. THE PILOT THEN ELECTED TO FLY OVER AN AREA OF SMALL LAKES AND PRACTICE DROPPING GRENADES. HE DESCENDED TO AN ALTITUDE BETWEEN 1500 AND 1000 FEET, INDICATED. FROM THIS POINT, WITNESS STATEMENTS CONFLICT AND ACTIONS PRIOR TO STRIKING THE WATER CANNOT BE POSITIVELY STATED. THE AIRCRAFT STRUCK WITH THE RIGHT SKID NOSE LOW HEADING 130 AT A HIGH RATE OF SPEED AT AN ANGLE OF ABOUT 25 DEG. THE RIGHT SKID TORE OFF TAKING WITH IT, THE CROSS TUBE AND A SECTION OF THE CO-PILOT'S FLOOR AND CO-PILOT'S CYCLIC CONTROLS. THE BELLY TORE OUT AS THE AIRCRAFT BOUNCED FORWARD TAKING THE FUEL CELL AND PERSONAL EQUIPMENT WITH IT. AS THE AIRCRAFT CONTINUED FOR ABOUT 30 MORE METERS, THE MAIN ROTOR STRUCK THE TAIL BOOM TWICE AND SEVERED IT 4 FEET FORWARD OF THE TAIL ROTOR. THE AIRCRAFT CAME TO REST INVERTED IN ABOUT 24 INCHES OF WATER. THE TAIL BOOM FELL 20 METERS FROM THIS PORTION ON A HEADING OF 200 DEG. THERE WAS NO FIRE.\\

This record was last updated on 05/25/1998


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Date posted on this site: 09/23/2017


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