Sunday, February 26, 2017

Van’s RV-10, N104HN: Accident occurred September 09, 2014 near Ellington Airport (KEFD), Houston, Texas

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Houston, Texas    FSDO-09

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

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board:  https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

http://registry.faa.gov/N104HN

NTSB Identification: CEN14LA495 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, September 09, 2014 in Houston, TX
Probable Cause Approval Date: 02/13/2017
Aircraft: NOLIN VANS RV-10, registration: N104HN
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 reported that the accident occurred during the airplane's second flight after receiving an experimental airworthiness certificate. The purpose of the flight test was to complete basic flight maneuvers, verify and calibrate cockpit instrumentation, and perform several takeoffs and landings at a nearby airport. After the pilot completed several landings, the engine, while at an idle power setting, experienced a total loss of power during the landing roll. After several unsuccessful engine starts, attempted over a period of 15 to 20 minutes, the pilot was able to restart the engine and depart on the return flight to the departure airport. The airplane then experienced another total loss of engine power about 3 miles east of the intended destination. The airplane did not have sufficient altitude remaining to glide to the airport, and the pilot completed a forced landing to a nearby vacant field, during which the left main and nose landing gear collapsed.

A postaccident examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of a malfunction or failure that would have precluded normal engine operation; however, postaccident damage to the electrical system prevented a complete evaluation of the ignition system.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
The total loss of engine power for reasons that could not be determined during postaccident examination.




On September 9, 2014, about 1500 central daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Nolin model Vans RV-10 single-engine airplane, N104HN, was substantially damaged during a forced landing while on approach to the Ellington Airport (EFD), Houston, Texas. The private pilot and pilot-rated-passenger were not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 without a flight plan. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local flight test that originally departed EFD about 1400.

The pilot reported that the accident occurred during the airplane's second flight since receiving its experimental airworthiness certificate on July 1, 2014, and that he was still operating under the restrictions of the initial flight test phase. The pilot stated that the airplane's maiden flight was completed earlier in the day and was flown by another pilot. The pilot reported that the accident occurred during his first flight in the airplane and that he was being assisted by the pilot who had completed the earlier flight. The purpose of the second flight test was to complete basic flight maneuvers, verify/calibrate cockpit instrumentation, and to perform several takeoff-and-landings at the nearby RWJ Airpark (54T), Baytown, Texas, before returning to EFD. The pilot reported that during his final landing at 54T, the engine, while at an idle power setting, experienced a total loss of power during landing roll. After several unsuccessful engine starts, attempted over a period of 15-20 minutes, the pilot was able to restart the engine and depart on the return flight to EFD. While en route, shortly after the pilot had established communications with EFD air traffic control tower, the airplane experienced another total loss of engine power about 3 miles east of the airport. The airplane did not have sufficient altitude remaining to glide to the airport and the pilot completed a forced landing to a nearby vacant field. The left main and nose landing gear collapsed during landing roll, which resulted in substantial damage to the left wing primary structure and the forward fuselage structure.

At 1450, the EFD automated surface observing system (ASOS) reported: wind 120 degrees at 6 knots, visibility 10 miles, scattered clouds at 4,000 feet above ground level, temperature 32 degrees Celsius, dew point 23 degrees Celsius, and an altimeter setting of 29.95 inches of mercury.

A postaccident examination, completed by an aviation mechanic, found no anomalies or obstructions to the fuel lines while compressed air was applied to the fuel system. Additionally, a functional check of the fuel selector confirmed its proper operation. Internal engine and valve train continuity was confirmed as the engine crankshaft was rotated. Compression and suction were noted on all cylinders in conjunction with crankshaft rotation. Both magnetos provided spark on all leads when rotated by hand.

The airplane was equipped with a standard Bendix-style magneto/ignition multiple-position rotary switch. The magneto/ignition switch had the following positions: Off/Left/Right/Both/Start. The wiring between the cockpit magneto/ignition switch and the starting vibrator appeared to be wired correctly. In addition to the normal magneto P-lead wire, each magneto had an additional wire connected to its P-lead terminal. These extra two wires traced back through the firewall and terminated at a two-position cockpit switch labeled "Mag Drop Selector." The two-position switch was also connected to a multi-pin connector and a wire bundle. The wire bundle to the multi-pin connector had been cut by the pilot/owner following the accident; presumably to remove components from the airplane before it was sold shortly after the accident. As such, the P-lead circuit path beyond the multi-pin connector could not be tested further.

The postaccident examination revealed no evidence of a malfunction or failure that would have precluded normal engine operation; however, the postaccident damage to the electrical system prevented a complete evaluation of the ignition system. Specifically, it was not determined if there was an unintended ground path in the P-lead circuit that could have rendered the magnetos inoperative.

NTSB Identification: CEN14LA495
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, September 09, 2014 in Houston, TX
Aircraft: NOLIN VANS RV-10, registration: N104HN
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 September 9, 2014, about 1500 central daylight time, an experimental Nolin model Vans RV-10 airplane, N104HN, was substantially damaged during a forced landing while on approach to the Ellington Airport (EFD), Houston, Texas. The private pilot and pilot-rated-passenger were not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 without a flight plan. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local flight test that originally departed EFD about 1400.

The pilot reported that the accident occurred during the airplane's second flight since receiving its experimental airworthiness certificate on July 1, 2014, and that it was still operating under the restrictions of the initial flight test phase. The pilot stated that the airplane's maiden flight was completed earlier in the day and was flown by another pilot. He stated that the accident occurred during his first flight in the airplane and that he was being assisted by the pilot who had completed the earlier flight. The purpose of the second flight test was to complete basic flight maneuvers, verify/calibrate cockpit instrumentation, and to perform several takeoff-and-landings at the nearby RWJ Airpark (54T), Baytown, Texas, before returning to EFD. The pilot reported that during his final landing at 54T, the engine, while at an idle power setting, experienced a total loss of power during landing roll. The pilot was able to restart the engine and subsequently departed 54T for the return flight to EFD. Shortly after the pilot had established communications with EFT air traffic control tower, the airplane experienced another total loss of engine power about 3 miles east of the airport. The airplane did not have sufficient altitude remaining to glide to EFD, and as such, the pilot performed a forced landing to a nearby vacant field. The left main landing gear and nose landing gear collapsed during landing roll, which resulted in substantial damage to the left wing primary structure and the forward fuselage structure.

At 1450, the EFD automated surface observing system (ASOS) reported: wind 120 degrees at 6 knots, visibility 10 miles, scattered clouds at 4,000 feet above ground level, temperature 32 degrees Celsius; dew point 23 degrees Celsius; and an altimeter setting of 29.95 inches of mercury.

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