Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Whittman W-10, N13XZ: Accident occurred March 28, 2017 at Stevensville Airport (32S), Ravalli County, Montana

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

Analysis 

The pilot of the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, after landing at an airport along his route, he observed a leak from the left master brake cylinder. He added that he "wiped up [a] considerable [amount of] brake fluid from the floorboard," conducted a "thorough inspection" of the left brake, and then departed for another airport.

He further reported that, during the landing roll, the airplane weathervaned into the crosswind, and he applied "full rudder and [the] application of brake found no brake available." He added that, after pumping the brakes, they began to function. The airplane veered off the runway to the right, and the left main landing gear collapsed.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's decision to take off with a known master brake cylinder leak and his subsequent failure to maintain directional control during landing. 

Findings

Aircraft
Directional control - Not attained/maintained (Cause)
Master cylinder/brake valve - Malfunction (Cause)

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)
Decision making/judgment - Pilot (Cause)

Factual Information

History of Flight

Prior to flight

Preflight or dispatch event

Landing
Loss of control on ground (Defining event)

Runway excursion

Landing gear collapse

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration Flight Standards District Office; Helena, Montana

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

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

http://registry.faa.gov/N13XZ


NTSB Identification: GAA17CA212

14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, March 28, 2017 in Stevensville, MT
Aircraft: THOMAS CRAIG E WITTMAN W-10, registration: N13XZ
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

NTSB investigators used data provided by various entities, including, but not limited to, the Federal Aviation Administration and/or the operator and did not travel in support of this investigation to prepare this aircraft accident report.


The pilot of the tailwheel-equipped airplane re
ported that, after landing at an airport along his route, he observed a leak from the left master brake cylinder. He added that he "wiped up [a] considerable [amount of] brake fluid from the floorboard", did a "thorough inspection" of the left brake, and then departed for another airport.

He further reported that, during the landing roll at the accident airport, the airplane weathervaned into the crosswind, and he applied "full rudder and [the] application of brake found no brake available". After pumping the brake, he added that, they began to function. The airplane veered off the runway to the right and the left main landing gear collapsed. 

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage.

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