Thursday, January 30, 2014

Carlson Sparrow II, N5955Y: Accident occurred December 04, 2013 in Jeromesville, Ohio

NTSB Identification: CEN14LA079 
 14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, December 04, 2013 in Jeromesville, OH
Aircraft: THOMPSON WILLIAM A SPARROW II, registration: N5955Y
Injuries: 1 Serious.

NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On December 4, 2013, about 1240 eastern standard time, an experimental, amateur-built Thompson Sparrow II, N5955Y, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain near Jeromesville, Ohio. The pilot sustained serious injuries. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which was not operated on a flight plan. The flight originated from a private airstrip about 1230.

The pilot informed Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspectors that he was in the process of testing a new carburetor that he recently installed. After conducting some taxi testing with the newly installed carburetor, he flew the airplane around his farm without incident. He did not recall the events after that point in time. The pilot believed that he took off again and that the engine lost power, but he was unsure at what point during the flight that might have occurred. He recalled that he might have been attempting to return to the runway at the time of the accident.

The airplane came to rest upright. The propeller assembly and engine cowling had separated and were located in the debris path. The propeller blades remained attached to the hub and appeared undeformed. The nose landing gear had collapsed. The nose and center fuselage structure was deformed. Both wings were twisted and exhibited leading edge crush damage. The flight controls remained attached to the wing. The empennage appeared intact with the exception of the lower portion of the rudder, which was deformed. The fuel tanks appeared intact and contained fuel. A postaccident on-scene examination of the airplane did not reveal any anomalies attributable to a preimpact failure or malfunction.

FAA records indicate that the pilot was issued a student pilot certificate on July 25, 2012; however, there was no record of the pilot having been issued an airman medical certificate. He could not provide any record of an endorsement for solo flight as required by the regulations. The pilot informed FAA inspectors that he did not maintain a flight time logbook. However, he reported accumulating about 300 hours total flight time, with about 30 hours in Sparrow II airplanes. The pilot also informed inspectors that he had been involved in previous accidents that had not been reported to the FAA or NTSB.

The accident airplane was issued an experimental airworthiness certificate in October 1998. The pilot bought the airplane in April 2012. However, FAA records indicated that the pilot did not submit the required documentation to transfer the registration. The airplane registration was subsequently cancelled on September 3, 2014. The pilot informed FAA inspectors that he did not maintain any maintenance logbooks for the aircraft. Although the pilot reported maintaining the airplane himself, there was no record of the pilot holding a mechanic or repairman certificate.


http://registry.faa.gov/N5955Y

NTSB Identification: CEN14LA079
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, December 04, 2013 in Jeromesville, OH
Aircraft: THOMPSON WILLIAM A SPARROW II, registration: N5955Y
Injuries: 1 Serious.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On December 4, 2013, about 1240 eastern standard time, a Thompson Sparrow II, N5955Y, impacted terrain near Jeromesville, Ohio. The pilot sustained serious injuries. The airplane was substantially damaged. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the flight, which was not operated on a flight plan. The flight originated from a private airstrip about 1230.



 

JEROMESVILLE — The Federal Aviation Administration says the pilot injured in an experimental aircraft that crashed Dec. 4 near Jeromesville had been involved in previous accidents never reported to authorities.

The preliminary report issued Jan. 13 said William E. Moore, 65, of 295 Township Road 1600, told an investigator who interviewed him at Kingston Nursing Home in Ashland that he does not plan to fly again.

“I’m done flying,” Moore confirmed this week.

The Jeromesville man told the News Journal he felt comfortable tinkering with an experimental, amateur-built aircraft because of his background as a mechanical/electrical engineer, but he had become increasingly concerned about problems he’d had flying the plane when the crash occurred.

Moore said he’d taken about half of the training he needed to fly solo, and was hoping to perfect his skills with touch-and-goes on a sod strip at his farm. His goal was to take his wife, who loves to fly, up in the Sparrow 11 he purchased April 9, 2012, he said.

Instead, after two short flights without incident, the aircraft apparently fell while Moore was turning it an estimated 150 feet to 200 feet in the air. Moore suffered two broken legs and a broken arm, and he was unconscious for five days after the accident. Medical staff told him he had bruised his brain, and it took two to three weeks before he could think normally, he said.

Moore still is recovering at Kingston. Doctors have told him it could be six more weeks before he can safely put weight on his right leg.

The FAA said Moore had about 300 hours of flying time in ultralights and about 30 hours in the Sparrow II when the crash occurred.

FAA investigator Arnold Wolfe wrote that Moore, laid up at the nursing home, told him about “many of the accidents he had in the Sparrow 11” before the crash.

In one incident, Moore hit power lines by his house, which stopped the aircraft and caused it to fall to the ground tail first. The Jeromesville man wasn’t injured, but the plane’s tail was destroyed. Moore, who did all of the maintenance on his plane, rebuilt that, the report said.

“During the investigation at the accident site, I noticed numerous cold welds on the fuselage structure,” Arnold wrote. “One tube became disconnected and was laying on the floor of the fuselage. It looked as if it just fell off.”

The FAA investigator wrote that Moore told him it became apparent after he rebuilt the tail section that the ailerons were rigged incorrectly, causing the Sparrow to go left when he initiated a right turn.

Moore’s flight instructor for ultralights, Gene Berger, told the FAA he saw the Sparrow 11 at the Shelby Airport, where Moore took it for a test flight, and noticed the aileron cables were held together with zip ties instead of a turnbuckle.

According to the preliminary report, none of Moore’s previous accidents were reported to the FAA or the National Transportation Safety Board.

On Dec. 4, the 65-year-old was testing new carburetors he had just installed. He told the FAA he taxied the aircraft up and down his sod runway a few times with the cowling off to check the engine operation, then flew around the farm and landed with no apparent issues.

Moore said his wife was watching when he reached an altitude of 150 to 200 feet, then turned the plane. Then, it crashed.

The FAA report said Moore didn’t remember the crash. “He stated ‘I think I took off again and the engine quit at some point. I think I was returning to the runway, but I am not sure,’” Arnold said.

Moore said he believes he may not have brought the engine up to full speed, which meant he couldn’t pull enough airlift. “I think I’m very lucky. If my wife hadn’t been home, I probably would have been dead. I would have bled to death,” he said.

Both wings and the nosecone of the Sparrow 11 were damaged by the impact.

Moore had a student pilot certificate, but no repairman or mechanic certificate, according to the FAA. The report said the Jeromesville man kept no pilot flight or maintenance logbooks. Arnold wrote that Moore pointed to his head, telling him he kept that information “up here.”

The aircraft was not registered, and the airworthiness certificate and operation limitations did not appear to be on the Sparrow when it crashed, according to the agency.

Moore said he took up ultralight flying eight years ago, after hearing a radio advertisement for a flying club. He never had any major incidents while flying ultralights, but he occasionally had to make minor repairs, he said.

The Sparrow 11 was “a lot different,” he said.

“I had a major crash a year and a half ago. It was my fault. I just put it in a power stall. I hit a tree limb and it spun me around. It put me tail down first, into a field.” Though he wasn’t hurt — “it was like landing on a shock absorber” — the experience was scary, he said.

“I found that the engine I had in the plane wasn’t strong enough to do what I wanted to do,” he said.

He said he feels badly that his wife is having to spend time with him at Kingston, rather than somewhere a lot further south, as Ohio remains in the grip of record low winter temperatures.

The two had been planning to take off in an RV to spend the colder months “somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico,” Moore said.
 

Story and comments/reaction:  http://www.mansfieldnewsjournal.com


Ashland County Chief Deputy Sheriff Carl Richert inspects the experimental aircraft that crashed in a bean field off Township Road 1600 on Dec. 4. 



Ashland County Chief Deputy Sheriff Carl Richert inspects the hand built experimental aircraft that crashed in a bean field of Twp. Rd. 1600 Wednesday afternoon sending one man to the hospital with serious injuries.

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