Commercial

Update: What is the Status of the Bell 525?

By S.L. Fuller | December 22, 2016
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Bell Helicopter 525

Photo courtesy of Bell Helicopter

Flight testing on the Bell Helicopter 525 Relentless is still suspended, but the program keeps progressing, the manufacturer told R&WI. The company is facilitating all proceedings that do not involve flight, while cooperating with the investigation of the July 6 crash.

“Bell Helicopter continues to work closely with the NTSB and FAA to complete the NTSB investigation of the 525 accident,” said the company. “The NTSB and Bell Helicopter have focused on a sequence of events, which is currently being further investigated.”

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Bell said it continues to make progress with sustainment planning, engagement with certification authorities, component testing, major structural and dynamics test, upgrades to its systems integration lab and production improvements.

This past summer, a Bell 525 broke up midair and fell out of the sky during a flight test and killed both pilots onboard. So far, evidence has shown signs that rotor blades came into contact with the tailboom and perhaps the nose as well.

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