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Claim: Helicopter Instructor's Cell Phone Use Preceded Crash

A student pilot who survived a helicopter crash in December has filed lawsuits claiming his instructor was using FaceTime, a popular video chat application, on his cell phone during the instructional flight in a Robinson R22. The lawsuits were filed by the student, Jonathan Desouza, and his lawyer against the flight school that operated the helicopter, Palm Beach Helicopters in South Florida, and others, according to a report in the Palm Beach Post. ( More...

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ADXbear 1
Hmm distracted flying now?
BaronG58 1
Yeah...FaceTiming and autorotation never ends well. Sad, such a preventable accident.
By reading the article, I do not see where the instructor's use of Face Time was a contributing factor to the accident. It might have been a bit unprofessional to have been Face Timing while the student was flying the helicopter, but there is no indication that anyone was Face Timing during the auto-rotation segment from what I read. Unless it was the student's very early hours (and I don't think auto-rotation would have been on the agenda if it was), how would Face Timing by the non-flying pilot differ from a task such as changing radio frequencies or transponder settings?
Also, the student says his recollection of the sequence of events leading to the accident is unclear. The instructor might have been doing his Face Timing before the engine was even fired up...
Just saying...
Chuck Me 2
A lawyer exaggerating when filing a lawsuit? No way.


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