Friday, September 9, 2016

Piper PA-28-180, N9241J: Accident occurred September 04, 2016 in Cuba, Sandoval County, New Mexico

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

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

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

NTSB Identification: CEN16LA349
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 04, 2016 in Cuba, NM
Probable Cause Approval Date: 01/26/2017
Aircraft: PIPER PA 28-180, registration: N9241J
Injuries: 2 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.

The private pilot and passenger departed on a night cross-country flight using flight following. About 2 hours after departure, the engine suddenly lost partial power. The pilot checked the engine gauges, which were all in the green, and advised air traffic control (ATC) of the loss of engine power. The pilot switched fuel tanks, then activated the carburetor heat. He tried switching magnetos and enriching the mixture for “a few seconds.” He then leaned the mixture again and “deactivated the carb heat,” all with no changes observed in engine power. The pilot declared an emergency with ATC and used his tablet computer’s navigation application to align the airplane over a road. Upon touchdown, the airplane’s wing impacted a guardrail, and the airplane subsequently nosed over. Although weather conditions at the nearest weather reporting facility about 50 miles from the accident site were conducive to the accumulation of serious carburetor icing at cruise power, the investigation could not determine whether the loss of power was a result of carburetor ice, and no postaccident examination of the engine was conducted to rule out other causes. 

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
A partial loss of engine power for reasons that could not be determined based on available information.

On September 4, 2016, about 0435 mountain daylight time, a Piper PA 28-180 airplane, N9241J, impacted ground obstacles and nosed over during a forced landing following a partial loss of engine power near Cuba, New Mexico. The pilot and his passenger reported no injuries. The airplane was substantially damaged during the nose over. The airplane was registered to an individual and was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed along the route of flight and the flight did not operate on a flight plan. The flight originated from the Levelland Municipal Airport (LLN), near Levelland, Texas, about 0235 central daylight time, and was destined for the Four Corners Regional Airport (FMN), near Farmington, New Mexico.

The flight landed at LLN to obtain fuel and subsequently departed for FMN. About an hour after departing LLN, Albuquerque Center advised the pilot that there was light to moderate precipitation extending approximately 20 miles north of Albuquerque. He observed on an iPad application that the weather was a "non-factor" by the time he reached Albuquerque. The pilot continued the flight northwest and felt the engine suddenly lose power. He checked the engine gauges, which were all in the green. He advised Albuquerque Center of the loss of engine power. The pilot switched fuel tanks then activated the carb heat. He tried switching magnetos and enriching the mixture for "a few seconds." He leaned the mixture again and "deactivated the carb heat." He advised Albuquerque Center that the airplane was not going to be able to maintain altitude and declared an emergency. He used the iPad application map and he aligned the airplane over a road. The airplane's wing impacted a guard rail during the forced landing and the airplane subsequently nosed over. The pilot reported that fuel leaked from the fuel tank caps vents while he and his passenger exited the inverted airplane.

At 0453, the recorded weather at the Santa Fe Municipal Airport (SAF), near Santa Fe, New Mexico, was: Wind calm; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition clear; temperature 16 degrees C; dew point 12 degrees C; altimeter 30.08 inches of mercury.

SAF's temperature and dew point were plotted on a carburetor icing probability chart. The plot shows a probability of serious icing at a cruise power settings at the temperature and dew point reported about the time of the accident.

The Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, in part, stated:

When conditions are conducive to carburetor icing during flight, periodic checks should be made to detect its presence. If detected, full carburetor heat should be applied immediately, and it should be left in the ON position until you are certain that all the ice has been removed. If ice is present, applying partial heat or leaving heat on for an insufficient time might aggravate the situation. In extreme cases of carburetor icing, even after the ice has been removed, full carburetor heat should be used to prevent further ice formation. A carburetor temperature gauge, if installed, is very useful in determining when to use carburetor heat.

http://registry.faa.gov/N9241J

NTSB Identification: CEN16LA349
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, September 03, 2016 in Cuba, NM
Aircraft: PIPER PA 28-180, registration: N9241J
Injuries: 2 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 September 3, 2016, about 2240 mountain daylight time, a Piper PA 28-180 airplane, N9241J, impacted ground obstacles and nosed over during a forced landing following a partial loss of engine power near Cuba, New Mexico. The pilot and his passenger sustained minor injuries. The airplane was substantially damaged during the nose over. The airplane was registered to an individual and was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed along the route of flight and the flight did not operate on a flight plan. The flight originated from the Levelland Municipal Airport (LLN), near Levelland, Texas, and was destined for the Four Corners Regional Airport (FMN), near Farmington, New Mexico.

The flight landed at LLN to obtain fuel and subsequently departed for FMN. According to initial information given to the Federal Aviation Administration, the airplane lost partial engine power. The pilot elected to perform a night forced landing on a roadway. The airplane's wing impacted a ground obstacle and subsequently nosed over.

At 2253, the recorded weather at the Santa Fe Municipal Airport, near Santa Fe, New Mexico, was: Wind 110 degrees at 5 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition few clouds at 8,000 feet, overcast clouds at 11,000 feet; temperature 19 degrees C; dew point 14 degrees C; altimeter 30.09 inches of mercury.

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