Enstrom 280FX Shark, G-BYSW
The pilot was intending to conduct a late morning flight from Plymouth to Dunkeswell and had obtained a weather forecast from Plymouth ATC. However, the Met Form 215 he obtained was issued that morning, but was only valid from 1400 hrs. The pilot also contacted Dunkeswell for their actual weather conditions. Based on this information, and that the top of Dartmoor was clearly visible from Plymouth, the pilot departed with the opinion that the weather conditions were suitable for the flight. As the flight progressed across Dartmoor, he was forced to make several deviations to keep clear of low patches of stratus cloud. At approximately 1120 hrs the pilot attempted a precautionary landing due to a lowering cloud base and reduced visibility. The landing site appeared to be shallow heather but was in fact deep gorse bushes. The helicopter sank into the bushes and rolled to the left, damaging the rotor blades and left door. The pilot, who was uninjured, carried out the shut down checks and vacated the helicopter through the right door.
Enstrom 280FX Shark, G-BYSW 11-08.pdf (234.69 kb)