The helicopter that crashed near Smithers in 2016. (Transportation Safety Board) The helicopter that crashed near Smithers in 2016. (Transportation Safety Board)

2016 Smithers helicopter crash caused by pilot-triggered hydraulic system error: TSB

No one was injured when the helicopter hit a snowy slope just minutes after takeoff

A 2016 helicopter crash northwest of Smithers was caused by the pilot triggering a known issue with the chopper’s hydraulic system, according to a Transportation Safety Board report released Wednesday.

The Airbus AS 350 FX2, operated by TRK Helicopters andd carrying a pilot and six passengers, had taken off from the base of a ski run about 82 miles northwest of Smithers.

This was the pilot’s final flight of the day: a trip from the Skeena River back to base camp, which the pilot had already flown that day.

But just one minute after takeoff, the pilot started to descend into a ravine, causing the speed of the helicopter to increase rapidly.

The pilot applied the aft cyclic control stick and tried to turn the helicopter to the left. However, the control stick did not move and the helicopter suddenly rolled to the right, pitched up and collided with a steep snow-covered slope.

The report noted that these types of helicopters can often abruptly pitch up and roll to the right when the aerodynamic forces on the helicopter’s rotors get to be too much for the hydraulic system to handle.

No one was hurt and all seven people managed to get out of the helicopter, which was heavily damaged.

The report found that the emergency locator transmitter did not activate.

Just Posted

Three people from recovering from shellfish poisoning

Butter clams harvested in November 2018 could cause paralytic shellfish poisoning

Port Clements gets cell service

Telus built a $500,000 wireless communication site for the remote Haida Gwaii village

Identifying child care space needs on the island

B.C. government is providing a $25,000 grant for more than 70 communities to help improve daycare

Northwest mobile unit to help those at heart of mental health, addiction crisis

Province, Northern Health unveils new unit in Terrace to bridge gaps in services

Sk’aadgaa Naay slips in Fraser Institute elementary school rankings

The school stayed at a rating of 5, but slipped to 694th rank in 2017/18

The good, bad and the unknown of Apple’s new services

The announcements lacked some key details, such as pricing of the TV service

Vancouver Island home to B.C.’s luckiest lotto store

Five million-dollar winners bought tickets from same Port Alberni corner store

Video of ‘brutal, shocking and chilling execution’ opens B.C. murder hearing

Sentencing underway for Brandon Woody after pleading guilty to second-degree murder in Nanaimo

Is it a homicide? B.C. woman dies in hospital, seven months after being shot

Stepfather think Chilliwack case should now be a homicide, but IHIT has not confirmed anything

SPCA seizes 54 animals from Vernon property

Animals weren’t receiving adequate care

Morneau unveils principles for Indigenous ownership in Trans Mountain pipeline

The controversial pipeline was bought by Ottawa last year

Refugee who sheltered Edward Snowden in Hong Kong arrives in Canada

Vanessa Rodel and her seven-year-old daughter Keana arrived in Toronto this week

New UMSCA trade deal getting a boost from Trump, business groups

The trade deal is designed to supplant the North American Free Trade Agreement

Trudeau says he, Wilson-Raybould had cordial conversation last week

Trudeau denies anything improper occurred regarding SNC-Lavalin and the PMO

Most Read