Saturday, April 8, 2017

Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser, N3280M, registered to and operated by the pilot: Fatal accident occurred April 08, 2017 at Orlando Sanford International Airport (KSFB), Orange County, Florida

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

Analysis 

The accident flight was the airplane's first flight after undergoing restoration over the course of 2 years. Although the mechanic who had worked on the airplane with the pilot wanted the pilot to do a high-speed taxi test before flight, the pilot wanted to "hurry up" and test fly the airplane as he had a friend visiting and wanted to take him flying in the airplane.

During the takeoff, witnesses observed the airplane pitch up into a nose-high attitude just after liftoff, stall, and descend in a nose-down attitude to ground impact. Examination of the wreckage revealed crush damage to the nose and the leading edges of the wings that was consistent with a nearly vertical nose-down flight path at the time of impact. Further examination of the wreckage revealed that the airplane's elevator control cables were misrigged, such that they were attached to the incorrect (opposite) locations on the upper and lower ends of the elevator control horn, resulting in a reversal of elevator control inputs. If the pilot had checked the elevator for correct motion during the preflight inspection and before takeoff check, he likely would have discovered that it was misrigged, and the accident would have been avoided. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: 

The incorrect rigging of the elevator control cables, which resulted in a reversal of elevator control inputs applied by the pilot during the takeoff, an excessive nose-high pitch, and subsequent aerodynamic stall after takeoff. Also causal was the inadequate postmaintenance inspection and the pilot's inadequate preflight inspection and before takeoff check, which failed to detect the misrigging. 

Findings

Aircraft
Elevator control system - Incorrect service/maintenance (Cause)

Personnel issues
Installation - Other/unknown (Cause)
Post maintenance inspection - Pilot (Cause)
Preflight inspection - Pilot (Cause)
Use of checklist - Pilot (Cause)

Factual Information

History of Flight

Prior to flight
Aircraft maintenance event
Preflight or dispatch event

Takeoff
Flight control sys malf/fail (Defining event)
Aerodynamic stall/spin

Uncontrolled descent
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Thomas Michael Camman
August 29, 1961 - April 8, 2017 

Thomas was employed by Spirit Airlines as a commercial pilot and held a BA in Airport Management from Memphis State University. He was a member of the following clubs/organizations, Quiet Birdman, Young Eagles, AOPA, Beechcraft, Heritage Museum, EAA and the Bonanza Society. Thomas enjoyed flying his planes, sailing, golfing, model trains and spending time with family and friends.




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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Orlando, Florida 
Lycoming; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

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


http://registry.faa.gov/N3280M

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board 

Location: Sanford, FL
Accident Number: ERA17FA148
Date & Time: 04/08/2017, 1256 EDT
Registration: N3280M
Aircraft: PIPER PA 12
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Flight control sys malf/fail
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On April 8, 2017, about 1256 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA-12, N3280M, was destroyed by impact and postcrash fire after takeoff from Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB), Orlando, Florida. The airline transport pilot was fatally injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local personal flight.

According to air traffic control audio information, the pilot received a takeoff clearance for runway 27L for closed traffic, which the pilot acknowledged. There were no further communications with the pilot.

Multiple witnesses stated that the airplane accelerated normally, lifted off, and immediately pitched up to a near vertical attitude. One witness stated, "it was like someone took the control yoke full aft." The witnesses reported that the airplane reached an altitude of about 100 ft, stalled, rolled to the right, and descended in a nose-down attitude to impact on the right side of runway 27L. A postimpact fire ensued that was extinguished by aircraft rescue and firefighting personnel on the airport. A witness recorded the flight on his mobile telephone. The video showed the airplane's takeoff roll, rotation, and initial climb and ended as the airplane pitched up to a nose-high attitude.

A mechanic who worked on the airplane with the pilot reported that the accident flight was the first flight following a 2-year restoration that included replacement of the wing and fuselage fabric, flight control cables, and electrical wiring. The mechanic stated that he was hesitant for the pilot to fly the airplane on the day of the accident. He wanted the pilot to do a high-speed taxi test first to check the tension on the cables and trim. The pilot stated he wanted to "hurry up and test fly it" as he had a friend visiting and wanted to take him flying in the airplane. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Airline Transport; Flight Instructor; Commercial; Private
Age: 55, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Front
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Unknown
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 1 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 02/07/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  25000 hours (Total, all aircraft), 150 hours (Total, this make and model) 

The pilot held an airline transport pilot certificate with airplane single- and multi-engine land ratings. He also held a flight instructor certificate with ratings for airplane single-engine, airplane multi-engine, and instrument airplane. His most recent Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) first-class airman medical certificate was issued on February 7, 2017, with the limitation, "must wear corrective lenses. " On the application form for this medical certificate, the pilot reported 25,000 total hours of flight experience and 400 hours in the previous 6 months. According to the pilot's logbooks, he had about 150 total flight hours in the accident airplane. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: PIPER
Registration: N3280M
Model/Series: PA 12 NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1947
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 12-2136
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 3
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 03/25/2017, 100 Hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.:
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 1735.57 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: O-235 SERIES
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 115 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held:  None 

The three-seat, high-wing, tail-wheel-equipped, fabric-covered airplane, serial number 12-2136, was manufactured in 1947. It was powered by a 115-horsepower Lycoming O-235-C1C engine, and equipped with a two-bladed, fixed pitch Sensenich propeller. Its most recent annual inspection was completed on March 25, 2017, at which time the airplane had 1,735.57 total flight hours. 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: SFB, 55 ft msl
Observation Time: 1253 EDT
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 292°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 22°C / -3°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: Calm
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.11 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Sanford, FL (SFB)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Sanford, FL (SFB)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1255 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class C

At 1253, the recorded weather at SFB included wind calm, visibility 10 statute miles, sky clear, temperature 22°C, dew point -3°C, and altimeter 30.11 inches of mercury.

Airport Information

Airport: ORLANDO SANFORD INTL (SFB)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 54 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 27L
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 6647 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: None

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude:  28.770000, -81.218889 

The airplane came to rest inverted on a heading of about 170° magnetic in a grass area about 9 ft north of the north side of runway 27L, adjacent to the 1,000-ft markers. The nose of the airplane was crushed aft. The propeller remained attached to the engine, and it was located adjacent to a linear ground crater consistent with the dimensions of the propeller.

The empennage, fuselage, cockpit, and wings were consumed by postimpact fire. The engine exhibited significant thermal damage, and several of its accessories had separated during the impact sequence. The engine crankshaft was manually rotated, and continuity of the valve train was established from the crankshaft flange to the rear accessory section. Thumb compression was obtained on all four cylinders.

All flight control surfaces (ailerons, flaps, rudder, elevators, and trimmable horizontal stabilizer) remained attached to their respective attach points. The left and right aileron cables were continuous from the control stick to their respective bellcranks. The rudder cables were continuous from the foot pedals to the rudder bellcrank.

The elevator control cables were continuous from the upper and lower attach points on the elevator control horn to the forward and rear control sticks. Manipulation of the elevator control cables revealed that a nose-up input on either control stick resulted in a nose-down deflection of the elevator (instead of the proper nose-up deflection) and vice versa. Further examination revealed that the elevator cables were attached to the incorrect (opposite) attach points on the elevator control horn, which resulted in the reversal of elevator control inputs. 

Medical And Pathological Information

The Office of the Medical Examiner, Leesburg, Florida, performed an autopsy of the pilot. The cause of death was listed as thermal and blunt force injuries.

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

Additional Information

During preflight inspection of a PA-12 (before engine start), a pilot can see the elevator's corresponding movements when the control stick is manipulated (either when standing by the open cockpit door or when seated in the front seat); likewise, a pilot standing on the ground and manipulating the elevator by hand can look forward and see the corresponding control stick movement. During a before takeoff check of the PA-12, a pilot can view the elevator from the pilot seat by turning around and looking back.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) issued Safety Alerts SA-041, "Pilots: Perform Advanced Preflight after Maintenance," and SA-042, "Mechanics: Prevent Misrigging Mistakes," in March 2015. That same month, the NTSB also released a Video Safety Alert, "Airplane Misrigging: Lessons Learned from a Close Call." The NTSB Safety Alerts and video, which inform general aviation pilots and mechanics about the circumstances of these types of accidents and provide information to help prevent such accidents, can be accessed from the NTSB's web site at www.ntsb.gov. 

NTSB Identification: ERA17FA148 
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Saturday, April 08, 2017 in Sanford, FL
Aircraft: PIPER PA 12, registration: N3280M
Injuries: 1 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 April 8, 2017, about 1256 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA-12, N3280M, was destroyed by impact and a postcrash fire after takeoff from Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB), Orlando, Florida. The airline transport pilot was fatally injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed for the local personal flight conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to review of preliminary air traffic control communications, the pilot received a takeoff clearance for runway 27L to remain in the airport traffic pattern, which he acknowledged. There were no further communications with the pilot.

A witness to the accident recorded the flight on his cellular telephone. He provided the video, and gave a statement to airport police, which was consistent with the content of the video. According to the witness, the "airplane accelerated normally for takeoff, pitched up, and continued to pitch up into a full stall, rolled to the right and nosed in on right side of 27L." He stated a postimpact fire ensued and was extinguished by aircraft rescue and firefighting personnel.

The pilot held an airline transport pilot certificate with an airplane single and multiengine land ratings. He also held a flight instructor certificate with ratings for airplane single and multiengine and instrument airplane. His most recent Federal Aviation Administration first-class medical certificate was issued on February 7, 2017, with the limitation, "must wear corrective lenses. " The pilot reported 25,000 total hours of flight experience on that date.

The three-seat, high-wing, tail-wheeled, fabric-covered airplane was manufactured in 1947. It was powered by a Lycoming O-235-C1C engine, rated at 115 horsepower, that was equipped with a Sensenich two-bladed, fixed pitch propeller.

The accident flight was the first flight following a 2-year restoration of the airplane that included replacement of the wing and fuselage fabric, flight control cables, and electrical wiring.

The airplane came to rest inverted, oriented on magnetic heading of about 170°, in the grass about 9 ft north of runway 27L, adjacent to the 1,000 ft markers. 

The nose of the airplane was crushed aft.

The propeller was attached to the engine, which was located adjacent to a linear ground crater.

The empennage, fuselage, cockpit, and wings were consumed by postimpact fire.

The engine exhibited significant thermal damage, and several of its accessories were separated. 

The engine crankshaft was rotated by hand and continuity of the valve train was established from the crankshaft flange to the rear gears. Thumb compression was obtained on all four cylinders.

All flight control surfaces (ailerons, flaps, rudder, elevators, and trimmable horizontal stabilizer) were attached to their respective attach points. 

The left and right aileron cables were continuous from the control stick to their respective bell cranks. 

The rudder cables were continuous from the foot pedals to the rudder bell crank.

The elevator control cables were found attached to the upper and lower ends of the elevator control horn in the tail of the airplane.

Elevator control cable continuity was established from the control horn to the forward and rear control sticks.

Manipulation of the elevator control cables revealed that a nose-up control stick input resulted in a nose-down deflection of the elevator and vice versa. 

Further examination revealed that the elevator control cables were improperly rigged, such that they were attached to the incorrect (opposite) locations on the upper and lower elevator control horn.


This picture was taken before the fatal accident.





SANFORD, Fla. - One person died Saturday in a plane crash at the Orlando-Sanford International Airport, officials said.

The incident involved a Piper P12 that crashed into the grass and burst into flames at the airport shortly before 1 p.m., said Lauren Rowe, with the Orlando-Sanford International Airport.

The pilot has been identified as Thomas Camman, 55, a long-time tenant at the Southeast Ramp of the Orlando-Sanford International Airport, officials announced late Saturday.

Diane Crews, president with the Orlando-Sanford International Airport, said the Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser was on its maiden voyage following its recent restoration. Crews said it appears the plane stalled, then crashed shortly after takeoff.

“This is a sad day for the Orlando Sanford International Airport. We grieve with the family and friends of Mr. Camman. 

We would also like to express our appreciation for the first responders today, including our Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Department, the Sanford Airport Police and the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office," said Crews.

Two runways will be closed until Monday for the investigation, but Rowe said it’s not impacting flights arriving or departing the airport. The runways impacted are for private and corporate planes, Rowe said.

"Planes been taking off, back and forth," said David Summerlin, who was at the airport. "(I) didn't hear nothing inside. (I have) been working all day, then we see a bunch of police and ambulance going that way. (I) didn't hear nothing."

The Federal Aviation Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board are investigating the crash.

No one else was injured, investigators said.


Story and video:   http://www.wftv.com




SANFORD -  Seminole County fire officials said they were investigating an incident involving a plane that came down at the Sanford International Airport and left the pilot dead Saturday afternoon.

The air traffic control tower at the airport issued an alert at 12:52 p.m. that a crash had happened in the grass on the north side of Runway 9R, airport officials said. A Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser crashed to the ground shortly after takeoff.

Airport officials said the pilot was killed upon impact. The pilot was identified by the airport as Thomas Camman, 55, a long-time tenant at the Southeast Ramp of the airport.

"This is a sad day for the Orlando Sanford International Airport, we grieve with the family and friends of Mr. Camman," Diane Crews, president and CEO of Orlando Sanford International Airport, said in a statement. "We would also like to express our appreciation for the first responders today, including our Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Department, the Sanford Airport Police and the Seminole County Sheriff's Office.

The Federal Aviation Administration released a statement on the incident earlier in the day.

"A Piper PA-12 aircraft veered off the runway and burst into flames as it was departing Orlando Sanford International Aircraft at about 1 p.m. today. Check with local authorities on the condition of the pilot, the only person on board. The FAA will investigate," the FAA wrote.

Airport officials said there were no other injuries to anyone on the ground, no damage to the airfield and no interruption in the airport's commercial flight operation.

Runways 18-36 and 9L are expected to remain closed until Monday following the conclusion of the investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board, airport officials said.

Original article can be found here:   http://www.floridatoday.com

SANFORD, Fla. - Seminole County fire officials said they were investigating an accident involving a plane that came down at the Sanford International Airport and left one person dead Saturday afternoon.

Fire officials said a Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser crash-landed on the runway and caught fire.

One person was killed in the accident, Seminole fire officials said.

A portion of the runway was closed following the accident, but did not affect operation on the main runway, airport officials said.

The Federal Aviation Administration released a statement on the incident.

"A Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser aircraft veered off the runway and burst into flames as it was departing Orlando Sanford International Aircraft at about 1 pm today. Check with local authorities on the condition of the pilot, the only person on board. The FAA will investigate," the FAA wrote.

Original article can be found here:   http://www.clickorlando.com



SANFORD, Fla. —   A pilot was killed when a small plane went off the runway Saturday afternoon at the Orlando Sanford International Airport.

The incident occurred around 1 p.m., when a Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser was taking off.

The FAA said the plane veered off of the runway and burst into flames. The pilot was the only one aboard, according to the FAA.

Airport President Diane Crews told WESH 2 News that runway 9R, the southernmost runway that runs east-west, is closed.

She said aircraft takeoffs and departures are continuing as normal, because this runway is not the airport's main runway.

She said there does not appear to be any damage to the airport. 

Original article can be found here:  http://www.wesh.com

The pilot of a Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser aircraft is dead after a fiery crash at the Orlando-Sanford International Airport Saturday afternoon, authorities said.

Lauren Rowe, director of communications at the airport, said the incident happened between 1 and 2 p.m. The plane was taking off when it veered off the runway and burst into flames in a grassy area, she said.

There were no passengers on board, and no one else was injured, Rowe said.

The crash occurred on a runway used by private aircraft, so airport operations were not affected, she said.

The FAA and NTSB are investigating the incident. 

Original article can be found here:   http://www.orlandosentinel.com

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is yet another terrible tragedy for the ALPA brothers and sisters and all pilots pilots alike. Just about a week ago we lost one active and one retired UA pilots in the mid-air. RIP!

Curt Sullivant said...

Tom was a great guy and very experience pilot. Everyone that knew Tom enjoyed his company. I don't think I ever heard him speak poorly about anyone. He will be missed greatly.
Blue skies as you head west brother.

Anonymous said...

Tom Camman a pilot's pilot.

Bill Mahoney said...

Preliminary NTSB report indicates elevator cables were rigged backwards.