Thursday, November 10, 2016

Grumman American AA-1C, N9556U: Accident occurred November 10, 2016 in Hemet, Riverside County, California

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

FAA Flight Standards District Office: FAA Riverside FSDO-21

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report  -  National Transportation Safety Board:

NTSB Identification: WPR17LA018
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, November 10, 2016 in Hemet, CA
Aircraft: GRUMMAN AMERICAN AVN. CORP. AA 1C, registration: N9556U
Injuries: 2 Uninjured.

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 November 10, 2016, about 1135 Pacific standard time, a Grumman American AA-1C airplane, N9556U, experienced a complete loss of engine power and landed on a field east of Hemet, California. The private pilot and pilot-rated passenger were uninjured; the airplane sustained substantial damage throughout. The airplane was registered to, and operated by, the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local flight that originated from Hemet-Ryan Airport (HMT), Hemet, at 1043.

The pilot reported that after takeoff he climbed to 5,000 feet when the engine lost partial power. The pilot switched fuel tanks and the engine operated normally. He continued the local flight and climbed to about 8,000 feet. While cruising, the engine suddenly lost complete power. The pilot attempted to restart the engine multiple times, however, to no avail. He landed the airplane uneventfully onto a nearby field; the airplane rolled along the rocky field and nosed over coming to rest inverted.

SOBOBA – At least two people were injured after a small plane crashed into a ravine off of Indian Truck Trail, southeast of Soboba Road Thursday morning, Nov. 10. The plane came to rest upside down at the end of a residence east of the Soboba Sports Complex, where Soboba Road comes to a dead-end at the dirt extension of Indian Creek Road.

The air emergency was reported to emergency dispatchers at 10:44 a.m. By 11:30 a.m., firefighters and other emergency first responders had extricated two victims from the wrecked aircraft and they were being transported by ground ambulances to local area hospitals. No information regarding the victim’s medical status had been provided.

The plane, a white and red, single-engine 1977 Grumman AA1, is registered to an Idyllwild area resident with an Idyllwild P.O. box listed.

The wrecked plane reportedly ran out of gas and attempted to make an emergency landing on or near the reservation, according to a CHP incident log. Other reports indicated the plane had possibly lost power. While landing, the plane flipped over and came to rest on it’s roof.

At least two occupants were inside the plane when it went down. It was not immediately known if there were additional occupants inside the plane.

Riverside Sheriff’s Aviation Unit “Star 9” responded to the area to guide rescuers in to the location the plane had come to rest, which was described as “rugged and inaccessible.”

Hemet/Ryan AirOps are en route to assist with the air emergency and crash investigation.

Federal Aviation Administration investigators have been notified and are also en route to the location to conduct a crash investigation.

Julie Jamison, a Hemet resident, said she heard what sounded like a plane in distress just moments before the plane went down. “I could tell something was wrong with the plane,” Jamison said. “After I stopped hearing the motor struggling, I was waiting to hear a crash.”

It was not immediately known where the plane had departed from or where it was traveling to.


Two people suffered minor injuries during the forced landing of a small airplane on the Soboba Band of Luiseño Indians Reservation near Hemet on Thursday morning, Nov. 10.

The red and white, single-engine Grumman AA1 lost power about 10:30 a.m., landed in a field and flipped, said Ian Gregor, a spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration.

The pilot, David F. Pelham, of Idyllwild, said by phone from Riverside University Health System Medical Center in Moreno Valley that the engine cut out when it stopped receiving fuel. Why that happened, he said, is under investigation.

"I'm fine," he said. "They're poking and prodding and testing."

Pelham said his passenger will be OK as well.

Both had to be cut out of the plane, said Deputy Armando Muñoz, a Riverside County sheriff's spokesman. The plane was found in a rocky field to the east of a dry riverbed off Cedar Avenue.

Pelham said his plane is based at Hemet-Ryan Airport. He has been a pilot for 23 years.

Firefighters from the Soboba Department of Public Safety and Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department responded to the incident.

The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate.


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