Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Wings An Things Avid Flyer, N430WT: Accident occurred August 02, 2016 in Bluffton, Wells County, Indiana

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

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

http://registry.faa.gov/N430WT

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA South Bend FSDO-17


NTSB Identification: CEN16LA300 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, August 02, 2016 in Bluffton, IN
Probable Cause Approval Date: 05/01/2017
Aircraft: WINGS AN THINGS INC AVID FLYER, registration: N430WT
Injuries: 2 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.

The student pilot was operating a personal, local flight in the nonregistered, experimental amateur-built airplane with one passenger onboard. The student stated that, while the airplane was climbing through 500 ft above ground level after takeoff, there was an uncommanded left roll. He reported that the airspeed was 60 knots (which is above the stall speed of 40 mph listed in the airplane’s specifications). He applied right control input to the control stick, which did not counter the left roll. The airplane entered a left spiral descent, and the pilot pulled back on the control stick and applied right rudder until the airplane impacted terrain. He reported that the airplane’s engine was at full throttle during the flight and that it did not experience a loss of engine power. 

A postaccident examination of the airframe, including the flight controls, revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. The investigation could not determine the reason for the loss of roll control.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The loss of roll control during climb for reasons that could not be determined because postaccident examination of the airframe revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation.

On August 2, 2016, about 2045 eastern daylight time, an experimental, amateur-built Wings An Things Avid Flyer airplane, N430WT, sustained substantial damage when it impacted a cornfield after takeoff from Miller Airport (C40), Bluffton, Indiana. The student pilot and passenger received serious injuries. The student pilot owned and operated the non-registered airplane under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the personal flight, which was not on a flight plan. The flight departed from C40 about 1945 on a local flight. 

The student pilot reported that he had flown for about an hour and then returned to land at C40. He decided to make one more takeoff and landing before completing the flight. He departed to the west and at approximately 500 ft, the left wing "dipped on its own without input from the stick." He countered with opposite right stick but without effect. The left wing continued to dip further to the left. He reported the airspeed was 60 kts (which is above the stall speed of 40 mph listed in the Avid Flyer specifications). He attempted to put in right rudder and right stick, but again without effect. He then tried turning into the left dip, but the airplane continued losing altitude. Before impact, he pulled back on the stick with hard right rudder, and the nose came up "some" before the airplane hit the tall corn. After ground impact, he exited the airplane, and then immediately worked to get the passenger unbuckled and evacuated out of the airplane. He reported that the airplane's engine was at full throttle during the flight and it did not experience a loss of engine power. He reported the loss of airplane control was due to a separated left aileron. 

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector examined the airplane wreckage and reported that there was no preexisting anomaly in the flight controls. He reported that there was flight control continuity from the cockpit controls to the flight control surfaces. The examination revealed that the damage to the four broken left wing flaperon attach points was consistent with impact damage. 

The 42-year-old pilot held a student pilot certificate and was authorized to fly solo in a Cessna 172, but there was no endorsement in his logbook to fly the accident airplane. The pilot's logbook indicated he had a total of 46 hours of flight time. There was no record in his logbook concerning any flights in the accident airplane. He held a third class medical certificate issued on December 17, 2015.

The airplane was manufactured in 1985. The airplane's maintenance logbook indicated that the last conditional maintenance inspection was conducted on January 23, 1995. At the time of the inspection, the airframe had a total time of 249.7 hours and the engine had 107.9 hours. On May 15, 2015, the FAA cancelled the airplane's registration and the airplane was considered as a non-registered aircraft. 


Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) 61.89 (a) states that "A student pilot may not act as a pilot in command of an aircraft: (1) That is carrying a passenger."

NTSB Identification: CEN16LA300
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, August 02, 2016 in Bluffton, IN
Aircraft: WINGS AN THINGS INC AVID FLYER, registration: N430WT
Injuries: 1 Serious, 1 Minor.

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 August 2, 2016, about 2055 eastern daylight time, an experimental, amateur-built Avid Flyer, N430WT, sustained substantial damage when it impacted a cornfield after takeoff from Miller Airport (C40), Bluffton, Indiana. The student pilot and passenger received serious injuries. The airplane was registered to a private individual 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 on a flight plan. The flight departed from C40 about 1935 on a local flight. 

At 2054, the surface weather observation at Fort Wayne International Airport (FWA), Fort Wayne, Indiana, located about 14 nm north of the accident site, was wind calm, 10 miles visibility, few clouds at 6,000 ft, temperature 26 degrees C, dew point 19 degrees C, altimeter 30.05 inches of mercury.

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