Trip Report Wanaka 2014 edition

Heinz

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http://www.odt.co.nz/news/queenstown-lakes/316528/caa-investigating-crash

The Civil Aviation Authority has launched a separate health and safety inquiry into last month's Mt Alta helicopter crash.

An internal review had led to small tweaks, including the appointment of an experienced pilot.

But Mr Quickfall said the firm's internal report had not found anything ''glaringly obvious'' in its procedures which might have led to the crash.

The company had ''pretty strong ideas'' about what caused the crash but he would not disclose them before the official findings were released.

Pilot Dave Matthews and guide Mark Sedon were recovering, but were not back flying, he said.
 

BofSki

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Interestingly when I went up with HMH a couple of weeks after the accident, they asked me my weight, which I can't remember them asking previous years. Were also 4 up plus guide, but I think that was just the way the booking worked out.
 

Heinz

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Interestingly when I went up with HMH a couple of weeks after the accident, they asked me my weight, which I can't remember them asking previous years. Were also 4 up plus guide, but I think that was just the way the booking worked out.

They have been asking weights all through this season. The regulators are trying to limit the weight in the front seat.
 
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Red_switch

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I've had to weigh in to almost every heli flight I've done over the years (none for heliskiing mind you), but that's been with a bunch of different operators... most recently this morning.
 

Heinz

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I missed this article with an interview with Mark several weeks later (Sep 28).
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=11332727

"I just saw the ground coming and only had time to register in my head that something was wrong -- then we hit," he said.
"I remember I closed my eyes and then we sort of exploded into the ground.
"It was really violent ... you don't really get much time to think but you are pretty sure it's going to end any second.
"Then I felt myself tumbling head to foot, head to foot outside the helicopter. I was flying down the mountain at 100 to 200 metres sort of head to foot."
Sedon came to a sudden halt in the snow, dazed and in agony, on his hands and knees.
"One of my eyes was closed from the impact and I was covered in fuel so the first thing was to see if there was anything burning."
Defying the pain barrier, and struggling to breathe, Sedon managed to make contact with emergency services and direct them to the scene of the mountainside carnage.
Rescuers, including a group of skiing guides, arrived on the scene about 15 minutes after Sedon called for help.
Box had been sitting at the back of the helicopter when it crashed.
It is understood the 52-year-old had been given cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) by members of the skiing group and then the first rescuers on the scene.
 
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Angus_McCrory

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I liked the look of that also, especially with the wife and baby going to Brazil this winter but thought I better see how the leg goes here first. Also have booked a trip to Canada for 2016
Get that leg nice and strong and think about it.....
 

Heinz

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Heinz

Fully vaccinated but nowhere to go
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The weight was 30 kg and 3 cm out. What % variation would these be?

That is discussed in the full report (3rd link) mostly on pages 22-24. Maximum permitted weight is 2250kg.
 

Ziggy

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Thanks.
So the weight was 1.3% over and the coroner thought that material. And it was slightly unbalanced.
 

Red_switch

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Thanks.
So the weight was 1.3% over and the coroner thought that material. And it was slightly unbalanced.
Tolerances are pretty fine on choppers. I spend a little bit of time loading them with gear for work, we have to be careful af.
 

Red_switch

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That said, it strikes me that the investigation seemingly didn't consult an alpine meteorologist, and the potential for "sinking air" to have played a role is downplayed. I really would have thought they'd have have talked to an expert in this field, given the pilots description of how the crash occurred. There are lots of weird things that can go on in the atmosphere just above ice/snow surfaces in complex terrain.
 
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