Emergency AD Issued After Fatal Alberta Helicopter Crash

Operators of certain Bell 212, 204 and 205 helicopters were ordered to inspect the main rotor hub pin straps on each of those aircraft and change them if they have a specified family of serial numbers. The Emergency AD came July 5 after the investigation of the crash of a Bell 212 fighting a fire in northern Alberta. Pilot Heath Coleman, 48, of Prince George, B.C., was killed when the aircraft went down in a rural area near the fire. Transportation Safety Board Investigators determined the hub pin strap failed, causing detachment of a main rotor. The strap had only 20 hours on it.

The TSB canvassed other operators with the same part family and found a 212 with a strap that was distorted after only 29 hours. All of the helicopters that use the same hub assembly were immediately grounded while operators checked the numbers on those parts. All hub pin straps with a serial number that begins with the prefix FNFS must be immediately replaced. There is no word on the cause of the premature failures.