Sunday, February 26, 2017

Cessna 120, N3580V and Piper PA-28-140 Cherokee, N612FL: Fatal accident occurred September 25, 2016 in North Collins, Erie County, New York

Pilot Paul Rosiek of Hamburg, New York, sits in his Cessna 120 at the Lancaster Airport in an undated photo. Rosiek died in a September 25th, 2016 mid-air collision above North Collins, New York along with pilot Richard Walker and Walker’s wife, Kathleen Walker, of Eden. 


Kathleen Walker


Pilots Paul Rosiek, left, and Richard Walker chat in an undated photo. Rosiek, of Hamburg, and Walker, of Eden, along with Walker’s wife, Kathleen, died when their planes collided midair above North Collins on September 25th, 2016.




The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident. 

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office: Rochester, New York   FSDO-23
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas

N3580V - Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:  https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

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

N612FL - Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf 

Paul A. Rosiek:  http://registry.faa.gov/N3580V

Richard J. Walker:   http://registry.faa.gov/N612FL 

NTSB Identification: ERA16FA324A 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 25, 2016 in North Collins, NY
Aircraft: CESSNA 120, registration: N3580V
Injuries: 3 Fatal.

NTSB Identification: ERA16FA324B
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 25, 2016 in North Collins, NY
Aircraft: PIPER PA28, registration: N612FL
Injuries: 3 Fatal.

NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On September 25, 2016, at 0923 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 120, N3580V, and a Piper PA-28-140, N612FL, collided in midair while in cruise flight over North Collins, New York. The Cessna was destroyed, and the private pilot was fatally injured. The Piper was destroyed, and the private pilot and passenger were fatally injured. Both airplanes were registered to and operated by their respective private pilots. Both personal flights were conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plans were filed for the planned flights that both departed Hamburg Airport (4G2), Hamburg, New York, with a planned destination of Saint Mary's Municipal Airport (OYM), Saint Mary's, Pennsylvania.

According to witnesses at 4G2, the accident airplanes were the first two of a flight of six that were travelling to OYM for the pilots and passengers to have breakfast together. The group of pilots regularly flew for breakfast on Sundays, weather permitting. The Cessna departed first as it was a slower airplane and required more time to fly to OYM. The Piper departed second. Two witnesses, who lived near the accident site, stated that they observed one airplane climb into another airplane and shear its tail off, followed by both airplanes descending rapidly to the ground.

Review of radar data provided by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) revealed that a primary target consistent with the first airplane departed runway 19 at 0917:59 and proceeded southeast. A target with a transponder code of 1200, consistent with the second airplane, departed the same runway at 0919:17 and proceeded in the same direction. The targets indicated that the second airplane was behind and to the left of the first airplane until they collided. The last radar target associated with the second airplane was recorded at 0923:22 about 6 miles southeast of 4G2, indicating an altitude of 3,500 ft mean sea level (msl). Further review of the radar data indicated that the second airplane had been level at 3,500 ft msl (plus or minus 100 ft) for about 50 seconds before the end of the data. The first airplane was not equipped with a transponder, nor was it required to be, so no altitude information was available from the primary targets associated with it.

PILOT INFORMATION

The pilot of the first airplane, age 60, held a private pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land. His most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on October 9, 2014. At that time, he reported total flight time of 786 hours. Review of the pilot's logbook revealed that he had accumulated total flight time of 828 hours, of which 4 hours were flown during the 30-day period preceding the accident. His most recent flight review was completed on May 14, 2015.

The pilot of the second airplane, age 69, held a private pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine land and instrument airplane. His most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on June 22, 2016. At that time, he reported total flight time of 793 hours. The pilot's logbook was not recovered; however, a copy of his last flight review endorsement was obtained through his insurance company. The pilot's most recent flight review was completed on September 16, 2016.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The Cessna was a two-seat, high-wing, fixed tailwheel, beige and blue airplane, serial number 14849, manufactured in 1948. It was equipped with a Continental C85, 85-horsepower engine. Review of maintenance records revealed that the Cessna's most recent annual inspection was completed on July 1, 2016. At that time, the airframe had accumulated about 4,322 total hours of operation and the engine had accumulated 217 hours since major overhaul.

The Piper was a four-seat, low-wing, fixed tricycle gear, red and white airplane, serial number 28-7125491, manufactured in 1971. It was equipped with a Lycoming O-320, 160-horsepower engine. Review of maintenance records revealed that the Piper's most recent annual inspection was completed on October 27, 2015. At that time, the airframe and engine had accumulated about 4,081 total hours of operation.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

Chautauqua County Dunkirk Airport (DKK) was located 20 miles west of the accident site. The recorded weather at DKK at 0953 was: wind calm, visibility 10 miles, sky clear, temperature 14° C, dew point 9° C, altimeter 30.26 inches Hg.

WRECKAGE INFORMATION

Examination revealed three wreckage sites. The main wreckages of the airplanes were located in fields near the second to last radar target and last radar target, respectively. The empennage of the first airplane and an approximate 4-ft section of the second airplane's left outboard wing were located in a cornfield about 0.3 mile west of the first airplane's main wreckage. The first airplane's empennage exhibited four propeller cuts through its left side. The second airplane's left wing section exhibited black rubber transfer, consistent with contact from one of the first airplane's landing gear tires. The first airplane's empennage exhibited red paint transfer, consistent with contact from the second airplane.

The first airplane's main wreckage exhibited leading edge wing crushing along the entire span.. The cockpit section was destroyed and only two readable instruments were recovered. Aileron control continuity was confirmed from the ailerons to the cockpit. Elevator and rudder control continuity were also confirmed from the first airplane's cockpit to the rear cabin area, where the cables had separated and exhibited broomstraw features at the cable ends. The elevator trim tab was found in an approximately neutral position.

The second airplane's main wreckage exhibited leading edge wing crushing along the entire span. The second airplane's cockpit section was destroyed and no instruments were recovered. Due to impact damage, control continuity could not be verified for the second airplane.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

The Erie County Medical Examiner, Buffalo, New York, performed autopsies on both pilots. The autopsy reports noted the cause of death for both pilots was "multiple blunt force injuries."

The FAA Bioaeronautical Science Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed toxicological testing on both pilots. The results were negative for alcohol and drugs.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Following the accident, a member of the group of pilots stated that the group planned to have the fastest airplane depart first when they flew together again. The group also discussed adding ADS-B to their airplanes.

Richard Walker


National Transportation Safety Board investigator Robert J. Gretz and Erie County Sheriff Det. Capt. Greg Savage.


























NTSB Identification: ERA16FA324A
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 25, 2016 in North Collins, NY
Aircraft: CESSNA 120, registration: N3580V
Injuries: 3 Fatal.

NTSB Identification: ERA16FA324B
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, September 25, 2016 in North Collins, NY
Aircraft: PIPER PA28, registration: N612FL
Injuries: 3 Fatal.

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 either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On September 24, 2016, at 0923 eastern daylight time, a Cessna 120, N3580V, and a Piper PA-28-140, N612FL, collided in midair while in cruise flight over North Collins, New York. The Cessna was destroyed and the private pilot was fatally injured. The Piper was destroyed and the private pilot and passenger were fatally injured. Both airplanes were registered to and operated by the respective private pilots. Both personal flights were conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plans were filed for the planned flights that departed Hamburg Airport (4G2), Hamburg, New York, to Saint Mary's Municipal Airport (OYM), Saint Mary's Pennsylvania.

According to witnesses, the accident airplanes were the first two, from a flight of six, that were travelling to OYM for the pilots and passengers to have breakfast together. The Cessna departed first as it was a slower airplane and required more time to fly to OYM. The Piper departed second and two witnesses stated that they observed it climb into the Cessna and shear its tail off, followed by both airplanes descending rapidly to the ground.

Review of preliminary radar data provided by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) revealed that a target consistent with the Piper departed runway 19 at 0919, and proceeded southeast. The last radar target was recorded at 0923:31, about 6 miles southeast of 4G2, indicating an altitude of 3,500 feet mean sea level (msl). Further review of the radar data indicated that the Piper had been level at 3,500 feet msl (plus or minus 100 feet), for about 50 seconds prior to the end of the data. The Cessna was not equipped with a transponder, nor was it required to be, and its flight was not recorded in the preliminary radar data; however, additional radar data (primary targets) were requested from the FAA.

Initial examination revealed three wreckage sites. The main wreckages of the Cessna and Piper were located in fields near the second to last radar target and last radar target, respectively. The empennage of the Cessna and an approximate 4-foot section of Piper's left outboard wing were located in a cornfield about .3 mile west of the Cessna's main wreckage. The Cessna's empennage exhibited four propeller cuts through its left side. The Piper's left wing section exhibited black rubber transfer, consistent with contact from one of the Cessna's landing gear tires.

Both main wreckages exhibited leading edge wing crushing along the entire span, consistent with nose-down vertical descents. Both cockpit sections were destroyed and only two readable instruments were recovered from the Cessna. No readable instruments were recovered from the Piper. Aileron control continuity was confirmed for the Cessna. Elevator and rudder control continuity were also confirmed from the Cessna's cockpit to the rear cabin area where the cables were separated and exhibited broomstraw features at the cable ends, consistent with overload. The Cessna's elevator trim tab was found in an approximately neutral position. Due to impact damage, control continuity could not be verified for the Piper.

The Cessna was a two-seat, high-wing, fixed tailwheel airplane, serial number 14849, manufactured in 1948. It was equipped with a Continental C85, 85-horsepower engine. The Piper was a four-seat, low-wing, fixed tricycle gear airplane, serial number 28-7125491, manufactured in 1971. It was equipped with a Lycoming O-320, 150-horsepower engine.

The pilot of the Cessna, age 60, held a private pilot certificate with a rating for airplane single-engine land. His most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on October 9, 2014. At that time, he reported a total flight experience of 786 hours. The pilot of the Piper, age 69, held a private pilot certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine land and instrument airplane. His most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on June 22, 2016. At that time, he reported a total flight experience of 793 hours.

Chautauqua County Dunkirk Airport (DKK) was located 20 miles west of the accident site. The recorded weather at DKK, at 0953, was: wind calm, visibility 10 miles, sky clear, temperature 14 degrees C, dew point 9 degrees C, altimeter 30.26 inches Hg.

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