Friday, February 24, 2017

Beech A36TC Bonanza 36, Big Sky Specialized Carriers Inc., N3803J: Accident occurred February 23, 2017 near Stevensville Airport (32S), Ravalli County, Montana

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

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

Big Sky Specialized Carriers Inc: http://registry.faa.gov/N3803J

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office: Helena, Montana


NTSB Identification: WPR17LA064
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, February 23, 2017 in Stevensville, MT
Aircraft: BEECH A36TC, registration: N3803J
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 February 23, 2017, about 1300 mountain standard time, a Beechcraft A36TC, N3803J, was substantially damaged when it impacted terrain shortly after takeoff from Stevensville Airport (32S), Stevensville, Montana. The private pilot and his passenger received minor injuries. The personal flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed.

According to the pilot, he based the airplane at 32S, and he and his wife planned a final destination of New Orleans. The takeoff was conducted from runway 12. The pilot "accelerated" the airplane to "80" [knots] and then lifted off. Shortly after, the airplane "couldn't climb or accelerate." The pilot stated that he was unaware of the cause of the problem, and that it felt like there was a "rapid decrease in power." He reported that he ensured that the engine controls were in their appropriate positions for full takeoff power, but that the airplane "would not lift" any further. The pilot reported that he had insufficient time to scan the engine power instruments or diagnose the problem, due to the airplane's proximity to the ground. The pilot did not retract the landing gear during the event. He did not report his maximum altitude, but he did report that he had previously experienced problems with the turbocharger system.

The airplane struck level terrain adjoining the south side of the runway. Ground scars indicated that the airplane traveled only a few hundred feet after initial ground contact. The airplane came to rest upright, about 300 feet from the runway centerline, and approximately 3,500 feet along the runway from the 12 threshold end, or about 300 feet prior to the 30 threshold end. The nose and left main landing gear were completely fracture-separated from the airplane, and the right main landing gear was partially separated. The engine mount was partially separated from the firewall, and the cowling and propeller were significantly damaged. Both wingtip fuel tanks were fractured, and the left wing leading edge incurred crush damage

A pilot-rated eyewitness who was situated on the northeast side of the runway, about 2,400 feet from the 12 end, reported that his attention was called to the airplane by its engine sound. He reported that the engine sounded normal, which he elaborated as both "strong and loud" and "ear piercing loud." The airplane just broke ground as it passed abeam of him, and he then mentioned to a person who was with him to watch the airplane, because its takeoff appeared to be unusual. The airplane achieved a maximum altitude of about 50 ft above the ground, and then began a "steep right descending turn." The right wingtip struck the ground first; it exhibited a brief flash of fire which quickly disappeared. The witness stated that runway 12 has a "substantial" uphill slope, and the terrain and trees also rise in that direction. He also reported that at the time, there was a "quartering tailwind" from the "northwest" of about 15 knots.

The pilot held a private pilot certificate with a single-engine land rating. Subsequent to the accident, he advised the FAA that he had about 569 hours total flight experience, including about 162 hours in the accident airplane make and model.

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) information indicated that the airplane was manufactured in 1980, and was equipped with a Continental TSIO-520 series engine. Preliminary information indicated that the airplane had a total time in service of about 2,927 hours.

According to FAA information, 32S was equipped with a single runway, designated 12/30, which was paved, and measured 3,800 feet long. Airport elevation was 3,610 feet above mean sea level. The airport was not equipped with an air traffic control tower. A dedicated Common Traffic Advisory Frequency (CTAF) was specified for radio communications use by arriving and departing aircraft. The CTAF communications were not recorded.

The 32S automated weather observations were recorded. In the period from 1255 to 1301, the winds were recorded as being from 340 and 350 degrees, between 9 and 12 knots, with numerous gusts to 16 knots. The observations also reported visibility 10 miles, temperature 2 degrees C, dew point minus 6 degrees C, and an altimeter setting of 29.98 inches of mercury.







STEVENSVILLE – Michael Burks, former owner of the Missoula Maulers and owner of the Butte Cobras, and his wife walked away from a plane crash shortly after takeoff from the Stevensville Airport on Thursday.

Burks said that his airplane lost manifold pressure shortly after the plane left the ground and soon started losing altitude.

Burks, who was piloting the airplane, said that he could have continued on course but that would have risked hitting a house located on the east side of the airport. He instead chose to veer to an open field to the south of the airport.

“The moment that began to make the turn to the south, the right wing stalled and we came down wing-first,” Burks said via Facebook.

Burks was able to level the airplane enough to avoid a cartwheel landing. The impact destroyed the landing gear.

“The right auxiliary tank did catch on fire (upon impact) but through the grace of God, did not ignite the wing (and) burned out as the fuel emptied onto the ground,” Burks added.

A witness to the accident told Stevensville Airport Board chairman Craig Thomas that the Beech 36 Bonanza’s wingtip hit the ground on takeoff.

Thomas said the plane was taxiing uphill, with a quartering tailwind, when the wreck occurred.

“Personally, I’m very afraid of a quartering tailwind at takeoff,” Thomas said. “It just feels different. My confidence level is significantly reduced.”

Burks sustained a scratch to his leg, and his wife, Kiomi Glenn Burks, received a few stitches to the side of her head.

“We want to thank every emergency responder for coming and helping us in every capacity,” Burks said. “It was something that I would like to limit to once in a lifetime.”

Thomas was equally impressed with the quick response of emergency personnel, adding that the airplane absorbed a lot of the impact.
Get news headlines sent daily to your inbox

“In walking around the aircraft, you could see that it didn’t come apart,” he said. “It wrinkled up, but held together like it was designed to do. … Thank God that the people were okay.”

FAA investigators were on the scene Friday.

Burks is a well-known Missoula businessman who helped found the Missoula Maulers, a junior hockey team, in 2005 and bought out his partner for full ownership a few years later. The team has since disbanded.

He also created and built the Butte Cobras, bringing hockey back to the Mining City.

Burks founded a Christian book store in Missoula and owns Fuel Fitness gymnasiums throughout the state.

In 2010, Burks financed a visit by former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin to speak in Missoula for a fundraiser for Teen Challenge. The speaking fee was reportedly north of $100,000.

Source:   http://missoulian.com

STEVENSVILLE -  They say any crash you can walk away from is a good crash. For Missoula businessman Michael Burks, that old adage rings true now more than ever.

Burks and his wife took off from the Stevensville airport Thursday afternoon, but almost immediately he knew something was wrong. 

He estimates they were in the air for ten seconds before the plane stopped climbing. 

The plane began to fall from nearly 150 feet in the air. Burks said he had two choices: keep going straight and try for a hard landing while risking hitting a home, or bank right.

He chose to bank right.

Burks managed to maneuver the craft with all the skill of a 30-year veteran of the skies, and the two emerged from the crashed plane unharmed, save for a scratch or two. 

Burks won’t credit his own aviation savvy, saying they were saved by divine intervention.

"The witnesses there were amazed when we were standing next to the plane absolutely unharmed. They were amazed,” Burks said.  “It was just one of those things where I just felt like the whole Carrie Underwood 'Jesus Take the Wheel.' Jesus took the yolk. Because there's no way in a million years I could have done that again."

Burks discovered a problem with the plane's manifold pressure is to blame for the crash. 

The FAA is investigating. 

Story and video:  http://www.krtv.com

Butte Cobras owner Michael Burks and his wife walked away from a plane crash shortly after takeoff from the Stevensville Airport on Thursday.

Burks said that his airplane lost manifold pressure shortly after the plane left the ground and soon started losing altitude.

Burks, who was piloting the airplane, said that he could have continued on course but that would have risked hitting a house located on the east side of the airport. He instead chose to veer to an open field to the south of the airport.

“The moment that began to make the turn to the south, the right wing stalled and we came down wing first,” Burks said via Facebook.

Burks was able to level the plane the airplane enough to avoid a cartwheel landing. The impact destroyed the landing gear.

“The right auxiliary tank did catch on fire (upon impact) but through the grace of God, did not ignite the wing (and) burned out as the fuel emptied onto the ground,” Burks added.

Source:  http://mtstandard.com

STEVENSVILLE – Two people walked away from an early-afternoon airplane crash at the Stevensville Airport Thursday with minor injuries.

The Beech 36 Bonanza crashed upon takeoff at about 1 p.m., said Stevensville Airport Board chairman Craig Thomas.

According to a witness who spoke to Thomas, the aircraft was attempting to take off in a southerly direction when its wingtip hit the ground, causing it to crash.

Thomas said the plane was taxiing uphill, with a quartering tailwind, when the wreck occurred.

“Personally, I’m very afraid of a quartering tailwind at takeoff,” Thomas said. “It just feels different. My confidence level is significantly reduced.”

People at the airport responded immediately to the crash site.

“If this crash had been at O’Hare field, there wouldn’t have been anyone there sooner,” he said. “All the people who responded were volunteers.”

The passenger had a “little head wound” that was bleeding profusely when Thomas arrived on the scene.

“Both of them had good eyes and hearing,” Thomas said. “I gave the pilot a hug an hour after the crash and he was still shaking.”

The airplane’s owner has a hangar at the Stevensville Airport. Names of the pilot or passenger were not released.

Thomas said the sophisticated aircraft absorbed much of the impact.

“In walking around the aircraft, you could see that it didn’t come apart,” he said. “It wrinkled up, but held together like it was designed to do… . Thank God that the people were okay.”

FAA investigators were on the scene Friday.

Source:  http://mtstandard.com

No comments: