14 Apr 2016

Pilot's lack of experience contributed to emergency - TAIC

11:57 am on 14 April 2016

The pilot of a helicopter that had to make an emergency landing lacked experience with the that type of aircraft and should not have been flying it, the Transport Accident Investigation Commission says.

The BK117 was taking a hospital patient from Ashburton to Christchurch in May 2014, with four people on board.

Both engines stopped and the pilot made an emergency landing on a farm near Springston.

The commission says the pilot's lack of recent experience with the type of helicopter contributed to the power loss.

The pilot did not refer to a checklist before the flight, and the commission says the company, Garden City Helicopters, had no procedures to address his lack of experience.

The commission has also found there should have been bright alert lights, but modifications in the cockpit affected how well they were seen.