Aerospatiale AS-350BA Helicopter Crash-Lands

An Aerospatiale AS-350BA helicopter, N209CH, sustained substantial damage when its main rotor blades struck trees during landing on Talsani Island, located in the Lynn Canal, about 13 miles east-southeast of Haines, Alaska.

The helicopter was being operated as a visual flight rules (VFR) local area on-demand air taxi flight under Title 14, CFR Part 135, when the accident occurred. The helicopter was operated by Coastal Helicopters Inc., Juneau, Alaska. The airline transport certificated pilot, and the two passengers, were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and VFR company flight following procedures were in effect. The flight originated from a nearby landing area about 1545.

During a telephone conversation with the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigator-in-charge (IIC), on April 7, the director of operations for the operator reported that the pilot was landing in an area of grass near the beach of the island. Just before touchdown, the pilot told the director of operations that the main rotor blades struck several trees. The director of operations indicated that the rotor blades could not be repaired at his facility, and were being sent to a blade repair facility.