Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Piper PA-23-250 Aztec, N63944: Accident occurred May 09, 2017 near Fremont Airport (14G), Sandusky County, Ohio

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Cleveland, Ohio

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket  - National Transportation Safety Board:

NTSB Identification: GAA17CA282
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Tuesday, May 09, 2017 in Fremont, OH
Aircraft: PIPER PA23, registration: N63944
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 reported that during approach in visual meteorological conditions he referenced the RNAV instrument approach for the runway to assist with vertical guidance "as [there] is no VASI (visual approach slope indicator)" for that runway. He added that he thought he was high enough as he crossed the adjacent highway, but the airplane hit a semi-truck that was traveling across the airplane's flight path. The airplane continued on short approach, landed, and the main landing gear collapsed. Subsequently, the airplane veered to the left off the runway.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left and right engine firewalls, and nacelle tanks.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the airplane that would have precluded normal operation.

BALLVILLE TWP. — A Fremont man bringing his plane in for a landing clipped a semitrailer driving north on Ohio 53, forcing the airplane to land on its belly.

The crash happened about 4 p.m. Tuesday at the Fremont Airport.

Nobody was injured as a result of the incident, including the truck’s driver.

"I was just driving down Ohio 53, and I heard a boom,” said Russ Street, a driver for the Sandusky-based South Shore Transportation. “It rocked the trailer. I thought the semi was going over.”

Street was coming back from a delivery in Indiana, and his trailer was empty.

“I thought I might have blown a couple tires,” he said.

Street pulled into the airport to find landing gear and a tire sticking out of the top of the torn-up trailer.

He saw the plane landing on the runway on its “belly,” a term pilots use whenever a plane’s landing gear isn’t fully extended and its underside acts as a primary landing device.

“I thought I had seen everything,” said Street, who’s been employed with South Shore Transportation for 20 years.

John Randall, 71, of Fremont, was piloting his Piper airplane on a practice flight, according to Trooper Donte Hanns, from the Ohio State Highway Patrol’s Fremont post.

“He left from Fremont airport and went out for 25 to 28 minutes before he came back,” Hanns said.

Randall is an experienced pilot with 3,500 hours of flight time, Hanns said.

It’s not known what caused Randall to come into the airport low enough to strike the semitrailer.

The Federal Aviation Administration was contacted and is expected to send investigators to the Fremont Airport on Wednesday.

Original article can be found here:

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