Friday, August 11, 2017

Air Tractor Inc AT-802A, N528MB, registered to and operated by Lesco Aviation Inc: Accident occurred August 09, 2017 in Galesburg, Knox County, Illinois

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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Springfield, Illinois
Transportation Safety Board of Canada; Ottawa, ON
Pratt & Whitney Canada; Longueuil, QC

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

NTSB Identification: CEN17LA309
14 CFR Part 137: Agricultural
Accident occurred Wednesday, August 09, 2017 in Galesburg, IL
Aircraft: AIR TRACTOR AT-802A, registration: N528MB
Injuries: 1 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 August 9, 2017, about 0730 central daylight time, an Air Tractor AT-802A, N528MB, sustained substantial damage during a forced landing near Galesburg, Illinois. The commercial pilot was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by Lesco Aviation Inc. under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 137 without a flight plan. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the local aerial-application flight that departed at 0630 from Monmouth Municipal Airport (C66), Monmouth, Illinois.

The pilot reported that the accident occurred about an hour into his first aerial-application flight of the day. He stated that he felt a slight "thud or bump" that he initially believed was the airplane flying through its own propeller wash during a turn. The pilot stated that the engine gauges were indicating normal parameters as he continued to line-up for another spray pass; however, before his next spray pass the engine experienced a similar "thud" that the pilot identified as a compressor stall. The pilot entered a climb to gain safe altitude and maneuvered the airplane away from nearby homes. The pilot reported that the engine experienced several more compressor stalls and observed sparks departing the engine exhaust ducts before it experienced a total loss of power. The pilot stated that a forced landing was made in a nearby agricultural field, and that the airplane ground-looped upon landing in the dense crop. The landing gear collapsed and there was substantial damage to the outboard right wing and aileron.

The engine, a Pratt & Whitney PT6A-67AG, serial number PCE-RD0221, was retained for a teardown examination.

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