The Transportation Safety Board says an improperly made pin in a crucial component on a Bell 412 helicopter led to the crash that killed the pilot in Alberta last year. The 48-year-old pilot was setting up to land when one of the main rotor hub strap retaining pins failed. That caused one of the rotor blades to separate and the resulting imbalance caused the second blade, along with the whole hub, to tear free from the helicopter.
The faulty pin was made from metal that did not meet specifications. The pin was made at Fore Machine Company in Haltom City, Texas. At the time a service bulletin was issued to determine if any other faulty pins had been installed in four models of Bell helicopters and compliance with the service bulletin was mandated by operating authorities in countries operating the aircraft.