Can a helicopter crash because of a translation error?

The title of this post says it all. Most of the Italian readers of this blog will remember the fatal crash on an Italian HH-3F of the 84° CSAR (Centro SAR, SAR Center) in France on Oct. 23, 2008, causing the loss of 8 POB (People On Board). For more background information I suggest reading the following articles: An ItAF HH-3F crashes in France, Mammaiut: all the ItAF HH-3F grounded and HH-3F crash caused by the fracture of a main rotor’s blade. The inquiry following the crash hypothesizes that the helicopter lose a blade as a consequence of two factors: the first one, bad maintenance performed by Agusta; the second one, could be an incorrect translation of the aircraft manual. In fact, the crew was signalled by a cockpit light that the blade pressure had decreased but, after landing in Dijon for further checks, (perhaps) they decided to proceed to Florennes because the manuals contained a translation error that induced them to follow an incorrect procedure to solve the problem.

About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.