Sunday, April 10, 2016

Rockwell 690B Commander, N690TH, privately owned and operated: Fatal accident occurred April 09, 2016 in Taylor, Williamson County, Texas

Mick Brethower 
Herbert Davis of Huffman, Texas and Mickey L. Brethower of Georgetown, Texas were killed in the crash.


The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; San Antonio, Texas
Twin Commander Aircraft LLC; Creedmoor, North Carolina
Hartzell Propeller; Piqua, Ohio
Honeywell Aerospace; Phoenix, Arizona

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:  https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:  https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

http://registry.faa.gov/N690TH

Location: Taylor, TX
Accident Number: CEN16FA146
Date & Time: 04/09/2016, 0951 CDT
Registration: N690TH
Aircraft: ROCKWELL 690B
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under:  Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 

On April 9, 2016, at 0951 central daylight time, a Rockwell International 690B, N690TH, was destroyed when it impacted terrain while maneuvering near Taylor, Texas. The private pilot and flight instructor were fatally injured. The airplane was privately owned and operated under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local instructional flight, which departed from Georgetown Municipal Airport (GTU), Georgetown, Texas, at 0941.

An acquaintance of the pilot stated that the purpose of the accident flight was for the pilot to conduct annual recurrent training to meet insurance requirements. He stated that, as the pilot and instructor were conducting a walkaround of the airplane before the flight, he heard the instructor telling the pilot that they were going to perform "air work" at an altitude of 4,000 - 5,000 ft, followed by instrument approaches. The acquaintance thought that an altitude of 4,000-5,000 ft to perform air work was low and that it should be at least 10,000 ft.

Radar data showed that the airplane departed GTU and proceeded east as it climbed to an altitude about 5,500 ft mean sea level (5,000 feet above ground level). About 5 minutes after takeoff, the airplane completed one 360° turn to the left followed by one 360° turn to the right. The airplane then resumed its easterly course in level flight for about 2 minutes, during which it slowed to a ground speed of 90 knots before rapidly descending. 

A witness near the accident site stated that the airplane entered a turn at low altitude and then went "totally sideways" and "started coming down" as if it was performing "tricks." She said that the left wing of the airplane was pointed to the sky and the right wing was pointed to the ground. She described the engine speed as "slow" and stated that the sound did not change as the airplane maneuvered before impact. She said the airplane descended with the nose pointing straight down toward the ground. 



Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 54, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 07/07/2014
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 05/16/2015
Flight Time: 1351 hours (Total, all aircraft), 65 hours (Total, this make and model), 1177 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 33 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 16 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Flight Instructor Information

Certificate: Airline Transport; Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 66, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land; Single-engine Sea
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Glider; Helicopter
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Helicopter
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s):  Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine; Helicopter; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 2 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 11/05/2015
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: 25975 hours (Total, all aircraft) 

The airplane was registered to the pilot on April 23, 2015. The pilot received dual flight instruction in the accident airplane from April 13 to May 25, 2015. The total flight instruction during this period was 34.2 hours. A logbook endorsement, dated May 15, 2015, showed that he competed a flight review, a pilot-in-command landing proficiency, and an instrument competency check.

The 54-year-old pilot held a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) third-class medical certificate. The 66-year-old instructor held an FAA second-class medical certificate. 



Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: ROCKWELL
Registration: N690TH
Model/Series: 690B
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1978
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 11487
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats:
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 04/06/2016, Continuous Airworthiness
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 10375 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 2 Turbo Prop
Airframe Total Time: 9002.5 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Honeywell
ELT:
Engine Model/Series: TPE331-10T-51
Registered Owner: Pilot
Rated Power: 776 hp
Operator: Pilot
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

According to the Model 690B Pilot's Operating Handbook, Section II, Limitations, the airplane's stall speed with landing gear and flaps retracted at gross weight (Vs) was 78 knots indicated airspeed (KIAS), and its minimum controllable airspeed (Vmca) was 83 KIAS. 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: GTU, 790 ft msl
Observation Time: 0950 CDT
Distance from Accident Site: 20 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 268°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 2900 ft agl
Temperature/Dew Point: 17°C / 11°C
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 11000 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 5 knots, 180°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.16 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Georgetown, TX (GTU)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination:  Georgetown, TX (GTU)
Type of Clearance: Traffic Advisory
Departure Time: 0941 CDT
Type of Airspace: 



Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude:  30.686389, -97.292222 

The airplane came to rest upright in a field oriented on a magnetic heading about 130° and was consumed by postcrash fire. The empennage was folded forward, and the left and right wing leading edges were crushed aft. The flap control mechanism was in a position consistent with flaps up. The elevator trim tab was about 16.4° down (nose-up). The flight control system exhibited separations consistent with overload throughout. The airplane's nose, forward fuselage, both engines, and propellers were embedded about 3 ft into the ground. Both propellers exhibited S-shaped bending, twisting, and chordwise scratching. The left and right propeller pistons had circumferential signatures consistent with blades angles about 18.6° and 15.5°, respectively.

The left engine throttle control was in the forward position, and the right engine throttle control was in about the mid-position. The left engine condition lever was broken off, and the right engine condition lever was in the forward position.

Examination of both left and right engines revealed extensive impact damage; neither engine could be rotated by hand. Both engines displayed bending of the first stage impeller blades in the direction opposite of impeller rotation, and debris in the first stage of the compressor consistent with impact with the ground. Both engines had metal deposits on the turbine rotors and stators, consistent with engine operation at the time of impact. Examination revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. 

Medical And Pathological Information

According to medical records, the pilot had high blood pressure treated with the non-impairing blood pressure medication valsartan.

Central Texas Autopsy PLLC, Lockhart, Texas, performed an autopsy on the pilot. The cause of death was listed as multiple blunt force injuries; however, the autopsy was limited to an external examination due to the extent of the injuries and was unable to identify any significant natural disease. NMS Labs' toxicology analysis, conducted as part of the autopsy, detected caffeine (a mild stimulant found in coffee and tea), acetaminophen (a non-narcotic pain and fever medication often marketed as Tylenol) and ethanol (a central nervous system depressant found in beer and wine but also produced after death by decomposition) in muscle. The toxicologist commented: "The ethyl alcohol concentration increased from 45 to 78 mg/100 g of muscle over multiple analyses. The nature of the specimen and/or the container type, which may not contain preservative, may explain the variable quantitative results. Small amounts of ethanol may also be produced by decomposition of the tissue."

According to medical records, the flight instructor had high blood pressure treated with the non-impairing blood pressure medication metoprolol and obstructive sleep apnea treated with a CPAP device.

Central Texas Autopsy PLLC conducted an autopsy on the instructor and listed the cause of death as multiple blunt force injuries; however, the autopsy was limited to an external examination due to the extent of the injuries and was unable to identify any significant natural disease. NMS Labs' toxicology analysis, conducted as part of the autopsy, detected acetaminophen (a non-narcotic pain and fever medication often marketed as Tylenol), beta-phenethylamine (a product of tissue decomposition) and a non-quantified amount of ethanol in muscle tissue.The FAA Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed toxicology testing on specimens from comingled remains, and the investigation was unable to reliably determine which specimen came from which individual. Testing of specimens attributed to the pilot documented that valsartan was not detected in muscle or lung and ethanol was not detected in muscle or liver. However, testing of specimens attributed to the pilot detected the primary psychoactive compound of marijuana, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), at 35.2 ng/g in liver, at 52.9 ng/g in lung, and identified a non-quantified amount in muscle. THC's inactive metabolite, tetrahydrocannabinol carboxylic acid (THC-COOH), was detected at 50.4 ng/g in liver, 18.8 ng/g in lung, and a non-quantified amount was detected in muscle. Additionally, testing of specimens attributed to the instructor pilot documented ethanol at 20 mg/dl in liver and heart; dextromethorphan (a cough suppressant) in liver, kidney and muscle; and valsartan (a blood pressure medication) in liver but not muscle. The report stated that THC and THC-COOH were not detected in muscle attributed to the instructor. Dextromethorphan is generally not considered impairing at therapeutic levels.



NTSB Identification: CEN16FA146
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 09, 2016 in Taylor, TX
Aircraft: ROCKWELL 690B, registration: N690TH
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

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 either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On April 9, 2016, at 0951 central daylight time, a Rockwell International 690B, twin-engine airplane, N690TH, owned and operated by a private individual, departed controlled flight and impacted terrain near Taylor, Texas. The pilot and the flight instructor on board were fatally injured and the airplane was destroyed by impact forces and a post-impact fire. The local instructional flight was being conducted under the provisions of 14 CFR Part 91 without a flight plan. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed. The flight departed from Georgetown Municipal Airport, Georgetown, Texas at 0941.

The purpose of the flight was for the pilot to get air work for insurance purposes. The flight profile was to include single engine air work. Preliminary radar data showed that the airplane was at an altitude of about 5,000 feet msl and had slowed to a ground speed of about 90 knots prior to disappearing off radar. The airplane impacted terrain shortly after the loss of radar contact.


TAYLOR, TEXAS - In a new report released Wednesday about the small plane crash in Taylor on April 9 that killed at least two people, officials released some new details, including the purpose of the flight and what happened just before the crash.

According to the report from the National Transportation Safety Board, the pilot was flying the plane in order to "get air work for insurance purposes." The flight was to include single engine air work.

The pilot of the plane and the flight instructor on board -- Mick Brethower of Georgetown and Herbert Davis of Huffman -- were killed in the crash and "post-impact fire."

The privately-owned plane took off from Georgetown Municipal Airport, according to the report.

The report also stated that the plane was at an altitude of about 5,000 feet and "had slowed to a ground speed of about 90 knots prior to disappearing off radar." The plane then collided with the ground shortly after.

A spokesperson from NTSB said a salvage crew picked up pieces of the aircraft that were wedged deep into the ground. He said those pieces have now been taken to a secure location to investigate.


The cause of the crash will not be released is not expected to be released for several months.

The owner of a plane and a flight instructor died when a plane crashed and burned in Williamson County on Saturday, Justice of the Peace Bill Gravell said Monday. He declined to release their names.

He said DNA testing that could take weeks needs to be done to formally identify the victims. Their relatives have been notified, he said. Authorities are still trying to determine if there were other passengers on the turbo-prop plane that could carry up to 11 people.

The plane had taken off from the Georgetown Municipal Airport on a training flight, Gravell said.

It crashed about 9:04 a.m. Saturday northeast of Taylor near the intersection of FM 1331 and County Road 429, according to the Department of Public Safety.

The fire was so dangerous that it took firefighters three hours to extinguish, Gravell said. The crash created a large hole in the ground where aviation fuel had pooled, so firefighters were trying to avoid explosions, he said.

There was a fatal plane crash in Taylor Saturday morning.

The crash happened just Southeast of Granger Lake. It was reported off FM 1331 just before 10 a.m.

Officers on scene described the scene as a mangled mess.

Authorities believe at least two people were inside the plane. One of them a flight instructor, the other a trainee.

They are not releasing the number of fatalities at this point.

The twin engine aircraft took off from Georgetown airport.

Brush trucks were able to get to the plane and take care of any smoke.

The FAA is investigating what caused the crash.

"We had a subject that lives over here in the area that heard the plane, saw the engines were having some issues, he looked up and saw the crash," said Trooper DL Wilson with Texas Highway Patrol.

Story and video:  http://www.fox7austin.com

Williamson County authorities are digging for answers and it's taking some heavy machinery to do it. They're probing a fatal plane crash near Granger Lake.

Wide open skies and wide open scenery attract lots of weekend pilots to Granger Lake. But today the National Transportation Safety Board finds itself investigating what could have gone wrong on one such scenic flight.

Neighbors say they're used to hearing the buzz of airplanes over the open farmland that surrounds the local lake. Neal Hoffman sometimes worries when he hears them. He says, "I hear them all the time and some of them don't sound too healthy either."

And one neighbor told authorities he thought the same thing when he one heard Saturday morning. Texas DPS Trooper DL Wilson says, "A subject lives over here in the area... heard the plane... heard the engines were having some issues. He looked up and saw the crash."

The plane came from the nearby Georgetown Airport where no one wanted to talk about the crash today. Meanwhile investigators brought heavy machinery to the crash site to dig up pieces of the aircraft that were buried on impact. And there will be a lot of digging. Trooper Wilson says, "It was a larger plane than we thought at first." The plane was an AC90 Commander twin-engine turbo prop which could seat 8 or more.

Right now investigators believe there were only two people on the plane when it went down. But they concede it will take time and maybe dental records or DNA evidence to determine just how many people were killed and who they were.


Story and video:  http://keyetv.com

WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) — The Federal Aviation Administrations is trying to figure out what caused a small plane to crash around 9:45 a.m. Saturday.

According to DPS a call of a plane crash came in near the intersection of FM 1331 and County Road 428, about ten miles northeast of Taylor in Williamson County.

When officers arrived at the address they discovered an Rockwell 690B Commander aircraft had crashed. A witness on scene told Williamson County Sheriff’s deputies that they heard what sounded like engine trouble before the crash.

Virginia Falk lives across the street from the field where the plane crashed.

“I heard an airplane, I could hear them humming around here because there’s quite a few of them that do that.”

But what she heard just after that sound, was unfamiliar.

“The hum of the engine went away and there was like a boom or a bang,” recalls Virginia, as she describes the noise.

That’s when Virginia says she ran outside.

“I could see this big straight stream of black smoke going straight up in the air and right away there was a ball of fire on the ground.”

DPS says the plane had departed from Georgetown Municipal Airport earlier that morning for a training exercise.

Virginia says all the training over her house is even scarier after Saturday’s crash. She’s thankful the plane didn’t hit any homes.

“It’s scary to be out here and have that (training) going on all the time,” says Virginia.

This isn’t the first deadly crash near Virginia’s house. It stirred up memories of a friend who lost his life in a crop-dusting crash ten years ago.

“He would always fly over the house too and you know, I knew that and yeah I thought of him (today).”

Virginia hopes she isn’t forced to see more police lights on her road anytime soon.

Investigators still have not released the names of the victims, or exactly how many people died in the crash.

The Federal Aviation Administration was on the scene working the investigation, and investigators with the National Transportation Safety Board are expected to arrive Sunday morning.


Story and video:  http://kxan.com 


AUSTIN (KVUE News) - Two people are dead after a plane crashed northeast of Taylor Saturday morning.

According to DPS a call about the crash came in at 9:04 a.m. near the intersection of FM 1331 and County Road 429.

When officers arrived on scene they discovered  what they described as a small plane with two passengers.

Both of the passengers were pronounced dead at the scene. The victims have not been identified at this time as the scene is investigated.

Story and video:  http://www.kiiitv.com

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