Aircraft Incident/Accident Report
Palo Alto Airport

Palo Alto, California 95148
Wednesday, February 2, 2000 14:37 PST

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NTSB Narrative Summary Released at Completion of Accident
The pilot and passenger were inbound to land and the pilot requested permission to perform an autorotation, which was approved. The pilot reported that he did not think he was going to reach the runway during the autorotation so he added power. The engine failed to respond and the tail stinger contacted the ground resulting in the separation of the tail boom. The pilot pulled collective pitch; the helicopter briefly became airborne, and spun violently to the right. The pilot maintained a level attitude and the helicopter landed hard. After the rotor stopped, they exited the helicopter. The pilot stated that he should have used carburetor heat prior to the extended engine idle period of the autorotation. The temperature and dew point were in the serious icing-glide power range.
NTSB Probable Cause Narrative
The pilot's failure to use carburetor heat, resulting in a loss of engine power, and, his misjudged autorotation approach that resulted in a collision with the ground during the landing flare. Contributing to the accident was the conditions conducive to carburetor icing.
Event Information
Type of EventAccident 
Event Date2/2/2000 
Event Day of the WeekWednesday 
Time of Event1437 
Event Time ZonePacific Standard Time 
Event CityPALO ALTO  
Event StateCALIFORNIA 
Event Country-- 
Zipcode of the event site95148  
Event Date Year2000 
Event Date Month
MidAir Collision IndicatorNo 
On Ground Collision occurred ?No 
Event Location Latitude-- 
Event Location Longitude-- 
Event Location AirportPALO ALTO  
Event Location Nearest Airport IDPAO  
Indicates whether the acc/inc occurred off or on an airportOn Airport 
Distance from airport in statute miles-- 
Degrees magnetic from airport-- 
Airport Elevation
Weather Briefing CompletenessUnknown 
Investigator's weather sourceWeather Observation Facility 
Time of the weather observation1437 Pacific Standard Time 
Direction of event from weather observation facility (degrees)
Weather Observation Facility IDPAO  
Elevation of weather observation facility
Distance of event from weather observation facility (units?)
Time Zone of the weather observationPST 
Lighting ConditionsDay 
Lowest Ceiling Height
Lowest Non-Ceiling Height20000 
Sky/Lowest/Cloud ConditionsThin Broken 
Sky Condition for Lowest CeilingNone 
Visibility Runway Visual Range (Feet)
Visibility Runway Visual Value (Statute Miles)
Visibility (Statute Miles)
Air Temperature at event time (in degrees celsius)18 
Dew Point at event time (in degress fahrenheit)11 
Wind Direction (degrees magnetic)60 
Variable Wind IndicatorUnknown 
Wind Speed (knots)
Wind Velocity Indicator Unknown 
Wind Gust IndicatorUnknown 
Wind Gust (knots)
Altimeter Setting at event time (in. Hg) 30 
Density Altitude (feet)-- 
Intensity of PrecipitationUnknown 
METAR weather report -- 
Event Highest InjuryNone 
On Ground, Fatal Injuries
On Ground, Minor Injuries
On Ground, Serious Injuries
Injury Total Fatal-- 
Injury Total Minor-- 
Injury Total None
Injury Total Serious-- 
Injury Total All-- 
Investigating AgencyNTSB 
NTSB Docket Number (internal use)789 
NTSB Notification Source-- 
NTSB Notification DateFeb 2 2000 12:00AM 
NTSB Notification Time1520 
Fiche Number and/or location -used to find docket informationIMAGE 
Date of most recent change to recordMay 11 2001 4:05AM 
User who most recently changed recorddbo  
Basic weather conditionsVisual Meteorological Cond 
FAA District Office-- 
Aircraft Involved
Aircraft #1
Aircraft Registration NumberN999EV 
NTSB NumberLAX00LA086  
Missing Aircraft Indicator
Federal Aviation Reg. PartPart 91: General Aviation 
Type of Flight Plan filedNone 
Flight plan Was Activated?-- 
DamageSubstantial 
Aircraft FireNone 
Aircraft ExplosionNone 
Aircraft Manufacturer's Full NameRobinson  
Aircraft ModelR44  
Aircraft Series IdentifierR44  
Aircraft Serial Number0667  
Certified Max Gross Weight2400 
Aircraft CategoryHelicopter 
Aircraft Registration ClassU.S. Registered/U.S. Soil 
Aircraft is a homebuilt?No 
Flight Crew Seats-- 
Cabin Crew Seats-- 
Passenger Seats-- 
Total number of seats on the aircraft
Number of Engines
Fixed gear or retractable gearFixed 
Aircraft, Type of Last InspectionUnknown 
Date of Last Inspection-- 
Airframe hours since last inspection94 
Airframe Hours94 
ELT InstalledNo 
ELT ActivatedUnknown 
ELT Aided Location of Event SiteUnknown 
ELT Type-- 
Aircraft Owner NameGARY M. LAMPERT  
Aircraft Owner Street Address1690 MCLEAN BLVD.  
Aircraft Owner CityEUGENE  
Aircraft Owner StateOR 
Aircraft Owner Country  
Aircraft Owner Zipcode97405  
Operator is an individual?-- 
Operator NameGARY LAMPERT  
Operator Same as Owner?No 
Operator Is Doing Business As-- 
Operator Address Same as Owner?No 
Operator Street Address231 STOCKBRIDGE AVE  
Operator CityATHERTON  
Operator StateCA 
Operator Country  
Operator Zip code94027  
Operator Code  
Owner has at least one certificateNone 
Other Operator of large aircraft?No 
Certified for Part 133 or 137 OperationUnknown 
Operator Certificate Number-- 
Indicates whether an air carrier operation was scheduled or not-- 
Indicates Domestic or International Flight-- 
Operator carrying Pax/Cargo/Mail-- 
Type of Flying (Per_Bus / Primary)Personal 
Second Pilot on BoardNo 
Departure Point Same as EventNo 
Departure Airport CodeSQL  
Departure CitySAN CARLOS  
Departure StateCA 
Departure Country  
Departure Time1427 
Departure Time ZonePST 
Destination Same as Local Flt-- 
Destination Airport CodePAO  
Destination CityPALO ALTO  
Destination StateCA 
Destination Country  
Specific Phase of Flight-- 
Report sent to ICAO?-- 
Evacuation occurred-- 
Date of most recent change to recordMay 11 2001 4:05AM 
User who most recently changed recorddbo  
Since inspection or accident-- 
Event Location Runway Number and Location30  
Runway Length2500 
Runway Width65 
Sight Seeing flightNo 
Air Medical FlightNo 
Medical Flight--