Monday, September 19, 2016

Cessna 172S Skyhawk, N52265: Accident occurred September 18, 2016 near Spirit of St. Louis Airport (KSUS), Chesterfield, St. Louis County, Missouri

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; St Ann, Missouri 

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/N52265



Location: Chesterfield, MO
Accident Number: CEN16LA379
Date & Time: 09/18/2016, 2006 CDT
Registration: N52265
Aircraft: CESSNA 172S
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation  

On September 18, 2016, at 2006 central daylight time, a Cessna 172S, N52265, impacted terrain during a go-around from runway 26R at Spirit of St Louis Airport (SUS), Chesterfield, Missouri. The airplane descended after it entered into a right nose-down turn while turning downwind for runway 26R. The airplane was destroyed. The commercial pilot sustained serious injuries. The rental airplane was registered to Christiansen Aviation Inc and operated by Air Associates of Missouri under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight that was not operating on a flight plan. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident for the flight that originated from SUS.

A flight instructor at SUS stated that during the right downwind leg for runway 26R, the airplane's altitude was "erratic as it pitched up and down" with "large power adjustments." The airplane's approach seemed "very unstable." As the airplane approached the runway, it entered a go-around. He stated that the go-around was "just as unstable." The airplane had overshot the runway and was well left of the runway centerline during the climb out from the go-around. The flight instructor then ran into the flight school building where he worked in attempt to assist the pilot by radio. As he reached for the radio, he heard the airplane engine accelerate and then heard a "loud thud." He ran out onto the ramp and did not hear any additional sounds. He concluded that the airplane impacted terrain.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Coordinator for the accident stated that the pilot was "coming in fast" on an approach to landing. The pilot then performed a go-around from runway 26R. When the pilot turned the airplane onto a right crosswind leg, he lost airplane control. The airplane impacted the ground about 150-200 yards northwest of runway 26R. There were no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal airplane operation. A requested written statement of accident investigation findings from the FAA Coordinator was not received.

FAA provided photos showed that the airplane resting in an inverted orientation at the end of the ground scar and the right wing was separated at the wing root. The right wing was resting along the ground scar, and the left wing was attached to the airframe. The left wing flap was in the retracted position. The cockpit throttle control was out about ½ inch and the mixture control was in the full forward position. The cockpit fuel selector had both wing fuel tanks selected. The cockpit pitch trim indication was in the full nose-down position. The cockpit wing flap selector was in the 0-degree flap position. The standby altimeter indicated about 425 feet mean sea level and the altimeter was set to about 29.96 inches of mercury.

The Hobbs meter indicated 2,729.9 hours. The tachometer indication was not reported and is unknown. It is unknown if the Hobbs meter sustained impact damage rendering it unreliable. Maintenance records recorded tachometer times and not Hobbs time. The last 100-hour inspections for the airframe and engine were at a tachometer time of 2,067.6 hours.

A National Transportation Safety Board Pilot/Operator Aircraft Accident/Incident Report (form 6120) was not received from the pilot. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial; Private
Age: 70, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 5-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed:
Medical Certification:  Class 2 Unknown
Last FAA Medical Exam:
Occupational Pilot:  No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 01/22/2014
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 657 hours (Total, all aircraft), 502 hours (Total, this make and model), 479 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 0 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 0 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 0 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: CESSNA
Registration: N52265
Model/Series: 172S
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2009
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal; Utility
Serial Number: 172S10899
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 07/20/2016, 100 Hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2558 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 2067.6 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Textron Lycoming
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: IO-360-L2A
Registered Owner: Christiansen Aviation Inc
Rated Power:
Operator: Air Associates of Missouri
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Night
Observation Facility, Elevation: SUS, 463 ft msl
Observation Time: 2017 CDT
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 135°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 19°C / 18°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: Calm
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 29.98 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Chesterfield, MO (SUS)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Chesterfield, MO (SUS)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time:  CDT
Type of Airspace: 

Airport Information

Airport: Spirit of St Louis Airport (SUS)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 463 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 26R
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 5000 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Go Around

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Serious
Latitude, Longitude:  38.662222, -90.651944 (est)















NTSB Identification: CEN16LA379
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 18, 2016 in Chesterfield, MO
Aircraft: CESSNA 172S, registration: N52265
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 September 18, 2016, at 2006 central daylight time, a Cessna 172S, N52265, impacted terrain during a go-around from runway 26R at Spirit of St Louis Airport (SUS), Chesterfield, Missouri. The airplane descended after it entered into a right nose-down turn while turning downwind for runway 26R. The airplane was destroyed. The commercial pilot sustained serious injuries. The airplane was registered to Christiansen Aviation Inc and operated by Air Associates of Missouri under 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight that was not operating on a flight plan. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident for the flight that originated from SUS.

CHESTERFIELD, MO (KPLR) – A Chesterfield pilot is expected to recover after the single engine plane he was flying crashed near the Spirit of St. Louis Airport Sunday night.

Authorities believe he may have been doing "touch and go” maneuvers when the plane stalled.  He was the only person on board.

The U.S. Air Force has credited the Missouri Civil Air Patrol with both a “find" and a "save", as in finding the plane and saving the pilot.

Their training and a search beacon led the way to the overturned plane and the injured pilot, Ranakrishna Vallurutalli, 70.

He was still trapped in the wreckage, hidden by the late night darkness and waist high soybeans.

“What we could see from the fence line when they actually found the airplane was just one of the wheels sticking up,” said Lt. Col. Keith Monteith of the MO Civil Air Patrol.

The plane went down not far Spirit Airport around 8:00 last night.

Helicopter searchers were picking up the plane’s emergency beacon, a steady radio tone activated by impact.  Still, they could not see the plane.  Their initial search focused on the Missouri River and Howell Island west of the airport.  But the handheld direction finder used by in civil air patrol’s ground search team locked onto the beacon and pointed them just north of the area where the helicopter searchers were looking.

“When we showed up with the direction finder, we got a bearing that said it was actually a lot close to the outlet mall, than Howell Island,” Monteith said.  “When the needle (of the direction finder) centers up then we just look straight ahead, that’s where the bearing should be to the airplane that we’re trying to find … so (we) directed the helicopter to relocate and search the soybean field that was just to north of the airport.  Within two passes he had lit up the crash site with his powered spotlight…we train for years to go out and find and hopefully rescue downed air crew before they are in too severe straits.  Many times you don’t find them in time.  It’s awesome if you find someone in time to make a difference.”

Shortly after 10:00, the search was over.  The FAA is investigating the incident but there is not yet any definitive word on what caused the crash.


Story and video:  http://kplr11.com

A pilot of a small single-engine airplane that crashed near Spirit of St. Louis Airport in Chesterfield on Sunday night reportedly suffered serious but non-life threatening injuries.

Chesterfield Sgt. Keith Rider identified the pilot as Ramakrishna Vallurupalli, 70, of Chesterfield. Vallurupalli was found conscious and alert inside the upside down plane about two hours after the crash, according to Monarch Fire Protection Agency officials.  He was extricated from the plane and hospitalized at a local hospital.

The investigation of the crash now is largely up to the Federal Aviation Administration [FAA], Rider said. Vallurupalli was the only person in the plane.

Roger Herin, a spokesperson for the Monarch Fire Protection District, said about 8:07 p.m. on Sunday night the control tower at Spirit reported the plane had gone down somewhere to the west of it.  Tower officials couldn’t immediately pinpoint the location of the plane,  A police helicopter found the plane after 10 p.m.

It was thought that the plane may be on the riverbank of the Missouri River in the Howell Island Conservation Area.  The plane turned out to have landed in an area near airport property, south of Rombachs Farm in the 18000 block of Olive Street Road that  shielded by high grass and  difficult to see, particularly with darkness setting in, Herin said.

The pilot actually was able to call his wife via cellphone to tell her to call 9-1-1 but the call was dropped before he could give a better location, Herin said.  Herin said another agency was in cellphone contact and responders were able to pinpoint his positions from the pilot’s cellphone signal.

Herin said the plane was upside down when responders came on the scene.  He said fire fighters had to literally cut the pilot out of the plane.  The pilot was then transferred to a local hospital.

Herin said plane crashes aren’t common.  “It does happen,” Herin said.

Source:  http://westnewsmagazine.com

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