Sunday, April 24, 2016

Maule M-7-235B Super Rocket, N367FS: Accident occurred April 24, 2016 in Littleton, Halifax County, North Carolina


NTSB Identification: ERA16LA181
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, April 24, 2016 in Littleton, NC
Aircraft: MAULE M 7-235B, registration: N367FS
Injuries: 3 Uninjured.

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 April 24, 2016, about 1500 eastern daylight time, an amphibious Maule M7 235-B, N367FS, was substantially damaged while attempting to land on a lake near Littleton, North Carolina. The private pilot and two passengers were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the personal flight, which departed the lake around 1445. The airplane was owned and operated by the pilot/owner and the flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to the pilot, he owned the airplane for three weeks, and had performed about 30 water landings. He performed a preflight inspection, noted the tiedown ropes were tight, but did not find any other anomalies with the airplane. During the takeoff, the pilot noticed that the airplane was veering "severely" to the left; however, he continued the takeoff. The flight was unremarkable, and the pilot returned to the lake to land the airplane. The pilot performed a "normal" landing; however, when the airplane touched down, it veered to the left, nosed over, and came to rest in the water. The pilot and passengers egressed without incident.

According to a passenger, the airplane departed the lake and it was a "smooth" flight. When they returned to the lake to land, the "rear of the floats touched [the water] followed by a small hop."

According to a witness who was on the lake at the time of the accident, the airplane approached the lake "hot" and "hit the water hard." He watched the airplane bounce about 10 feet into the air and then impact the water again. Then, the wing tip struck the water and the airplane nosed over.

According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the airplane was manufactured in 2005, was registered to the pilot in April 2016. It was equipped with a Lycoming O-540 series engine. According to airplane maintenance logbooks, the most recent annual inspection was completed on March 2, 2016, and at that time, the airplane had accumulated 1,090.8 hours of total time.

According to the pilot, he held a private pilot certificate for airplane single-engine land and single-engine sea. His most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on April 20, 2016. He reported 1,900 hours of flight experience, of which, 25 hours were in the same make and model as the accident airplane.

A postaccident examination of the airframe, by an FAA inspector, revealed that the bottom of the left float skin was partially separated along a rivet line. In addition, the left float was bent in a positive direction, about 20 degrees. The wings, rudder, and fuselage were substantially damaged in the accident sequence. Flight control continuity was confirmed from the cockpit to all control surfaces and the four landing gear tires were in the retracted position.

Sections of the left float skin were sent to the NTSB Materials Laboratory for further examination. The fracture surfaces were examined visually and exhibited a rough texture with a dull luster. No evidence was noted of corrosion on the fracture surfaces. Overall, the fracture surfaces were consistent with failure from overstress on a thin-walled structure.

GASTON LAKE — A small plane with three people onboard rolled three times while trying to land on Lake Gaston Sunday afternoon, authorities said.

Officials said the aircraft—a 2005 Maule 235 single engine plane—was piloted by Paul Heaton Jr. Authorities said Heaton regularly lands the aircraft on Gaston Lake without incident. 

Heaton Jr. and two passengers onboard were not hurt in the accident, officials said.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the crash. No additional information has been released.

Original article can be found here:

LITTLETON, N.C. (WTVD) --  A small plane with three people on board flipped over after landing on Lake Gaston in Littleton on Sunday, according to the FAA.

It was a float plane and it happened around 3:30 p.m. Highway Patrol said Paul Heaton of Roanoke Rapids was piloting the aircraft.

Heaton says he and the other two passengers are doing fine. They were flying locally to take scenic pictures. He says the landing was normal but there appeared to be a failure with the left pontoon.

The plane rolled over 3 times, according to troopers.

Heaton is still working with the FAA to figure out what happened.

The plane was removed from the lake and the the FAA is investigating.

Original article can be found here:

No comments: