The NTSB is continuing its investigation into the fatal early Friday morning midair between a Robinson R22 and a Piper PA-28 Archer II at Chandler Municipal Airport (KCHD) in Arizona. Both aircraft were operated by flight schools on the field and were conducting flight training operations at the time of the accident, with one instructor and one student aboard each aircraft.
At approximately 7:42 a.m. local time, while the Piper had been conducting a series of touch and go landings and was on short final to land, the main rotor blades of the Robinson struck the Piper’s landing gear, separating the main left gear from the airplane, which then landed safely before skidding off the runway. Neither occupant was injured.
Witnesses said the main rotor of the R22 separated on impact and the debris from it then struck various parts of the R22 and generated an in-flight break-up. The left main gear from the Piper was found next to the R22. The helicopter wreckage was consumed in a post-crash fire and both occupants aboard were killed. The R22, registered as N412TL, was operated by Quantum Helicopters, while the Archer was operated by Flight Operations Academy.