Saturday, August 19, 2017

Cessna 182F Skylane, N5738F, registered to a private individual and operated by Pacific Coast Flyers: Fatal accident occurred August 06, 2015 in Montecito, Santa Barbara County, California

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

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

NTSB Identification: WPR15FA236
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, August 06, 2015 in Montecito, CA
Probable Cause Approval Date: 08/28/2017
Aircraft: CESSNA 182F, registration: N5738F
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

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.

The commercial pilot was conducting a cross-country business flight. While en route to the destination airport, the pilot reported to an air traffic controller that they were going to lose an engine. The flight was over mountainous terrain; the controller provided nearby airports to the pilot, and the pilot chose a diversionary airport. The pilot then reported that the airplane was experiencing vibrations and that he could not see anything due to oil on his windscreen, as well as smoke that had entered into the cabin. The controller told the pilot that he would report an emergency for him; no further communications were received from the pilot. The airplane was located the following morning in mountainous terrain. 

The airplane struck a mountain at an elevation of 3,554 ft. On-site examination of the wreckage revealed that the airplane came to rest inverted with the undercarriage covered in oil from the nose to the tail. An examination of the airframe revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation.

The engine teardown examination revealed a hole in the engine crankcase above the No. 6 connecting rod. The No. 5 connecting rod had fractured and separated from the crankshaft, which caused internal damage to the engine and led to the loss of engine power. The internal components exhibited signs of oil starvation; however, the cause of the oil starvation could not be determined. 

Although a small amount of ethanol was detected in the pilot's cavity blood, no ethanol was detected in the vitreous or urine, indicating that the detected ethanol was likely due to postmortem production and did not contribute to the accident. Although the pilot's tissue samples tested positive for small amounts of the inactive metabolite of marijuana, no active drug was detected in the pilot's blood; therefore, the pilot was likely not experiencing significant effects from his marijuana use at the time of the accident.

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident as follows:
Oil starvation that led to the failure of the No. 5 connecting rod and a subsequent loss of engine power.




Birger Greg Bacino

David Keith Martz



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

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Van Nuys, California
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas
Continental Motors Inc.; Mobile, Alabama

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

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

Operator: Pacific Coast Flyers


http://registry.faa.gov/N5738F




NTSB Identification: WPR15FA236
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, August 06, 2015 in Montecito, CA
Aircraft: CESSNA 182F, registration: N5738F
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

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.

HISTORY OF FLIGHT

On August 6, 2015, about 2210 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 182F airplane, N5738F, impacted mountainous terrain about 15 miles northeast of Montecito, California. The pilot and passenger were fatally injured, and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to a private individual and operated by Pacific Coast Flyers as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 cross-country business flight. Night visual meteorological conditions existed near the accident site about the time of the accident, and no flight plan had been filed. The flight had departed from the San Luis County Regional Airport, San Luis Obispo, California, at an undetermined time, and was destined for Mc Clellan-Palomar Airport, Carlsbad, California.

The pilot checked in with Point Mugu Approach Control at 2147:31. Less than 1 minute later, the pilot reported that there was a problem, and reported that he wasn't sure where they were going from here, and asked for directions. At 2148:26, the pilot reported that they were going to lose an engine, and then stated, "here something just happened." The controller and the pilot then discussed nearby diversionary airports, they chose Santa Barbara. At 2149:27, the pilot reported vibrations and that he couldn't see anything. He then reported an oil problem, "I think… we lost something." At 2150:21, the pilot reported that smoke was coming into the cabin; the controller told the pilot he was going to declare an emergency for him. No further communications were received from the pilot after 2150:58. At 2151:34, the approach controller reported to the Los Angeles Air Route Traffic Control Center that the accident airplane had blown something, that the windshield was covered with oil, that there was smoke in the cockpit, and that the pilot was attempting to get to Santa Barbara.

The Ventura County Sheriff's Department located the airplane wreckage the next morning at 0430 in mountainous terrain.

PERSONNEL INFORMATION

The pilot held a commercial pilot certificate with a rotorcraft-helicopter rating, and private pilot privileges for airplane single- and multiengine land.
The pilot's personal flight records were not located. A review of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) airmen medical records revealed that the pilot was issued a time-limited, special issuance, second-class on March 7, 2015. On his medical certificate application, the pilot reported 6,250 total flight hours and 50 hours in the previous 6 months. The Aerospace Medical Certification Division withdrew the special issuance and issued a general denial on April 27, 2015, for alcohol dependence and failure to report a 2013 DUI. On July 29, 2015, the pilot requested a reconsideration because he had completed alcohol treatment and was in aftercare, but a decision was pending at the time of the accident.

AIRCRAFT INFORMATION

The four-seat, high-wing, fixed-gear airplane, serial number 18254796, was manufactured in 1963. It was powered by a Continental Motors O-470-R 230-horsepower reciprocating engine.

The airplane was purchased by a private owner on November 22, 2014, and was leased to Pacific Coast Flyers as a rental airplane.

A review of the airplane's maintenance logbook revealed that an annual/100-hour inspection was completed on May 1, 2015, at which time the airframe total time was 6,050.25 hours, and the engine time since major overhaul was 250.4 hours.

The engine was overhauled by Corona Aircraft Engines, Corona, California; test run, and returned to service on September 10, 2009, as a zero hours-SMOH engine. The engine was installed on the accident airplane on September 18, 2009, at an airframe total time of 5,529.85 hours.

A March 18, 2011, Blackstone Laboratories oil sample report noted that there was an excessive amount of metal in an oil sample; that had been submitted for testing, and suggested a thorough inspection of the engine before operating the airplane. An April 29, 2013, oil sample report noted that there was some improvement, but that an excessive amount of metal was still present in the oil sample, and that "this engine could have some serious issues in the works." The report suggested that the operator look for cylinder issues and/or exhaust valve guide problems, change the oil every 30 hours, and proceed with caution.

A December 9, 2013, Blackstone Laboratories oil sample report indicated that the amount of wear metals in the sample were "coming down" from previous samples, but recommended that the operator try a shorter oil run to wash out the excess metals and then resample the oil in about 30 hours. An April 15, 2014, oil sample report showed that the amount of wear metals in the oil sample were much lower, and that the improvements were promising. The laboratory suggested using another shorter oil run, and submitting another sample. A February 19, 2015, oil sample report stated that the oil sample was better than past samples, and that the wear metals were in the average range. There was no contamination identified at this time; engine total time was 486 hours since major overhaul.

METEOROLOGICAL INFORMATION

The nearest weather reporting station from the accident site was located 23 nautical miles southwest of the accident site at the Santa Barbara Municipal airport (SBA), Santa Barbara, California.

At 2153, the weather was reported as clear sky, visibility 10 statute miles. The temperature was 21 degrees C, dew point was 17 degrees C. The wind was from 100 degrees at 6 knots. The altimeter setting was 29.83 Hg.
The end of civil twilight occurred at 2023.

WRECKAGE AND IMPACT INFORMATION

The airplane impacted a mountain at an elevation of 3,554 ft. The airplane came to rest inverted on a near-vertical slope about 300 feet below the top of the ridgeline; the airplane came to rest about 50 ft below the impact point. The airframe examination revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation.

Oil was observed on the airplane's undercarriage from the nose to the tail cone. A visual examination of the engine revealed a hole in the top of the engine case near the No. 6 cylinder. The engine was shipped to the manufacturer for further examination.

MEDICAL AND PATHOLOGICAL INFORMATION

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff-Coroner, Coroner's Bureau, conducted an autopsy on the pilot. The cause of death was reported as "multiple traumatic injuries."

The FAA's Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed toxicology testing on specimens from the pilot. The testing detected 0.0431 and 0.002 (ug/ml, ug/g) tetrahydrocannabinol carboxylic acid, the inactive metabolite of marijuana in the liver and cavity blood respectively; no tetrahydrocannabinol (marijuana) was detected in the cavity blood.

No ethanol was detected in the urine or vitreous; 67 (mg/dL, mg/hg) ethanol was detected in cavity blood.

TEST AND RESEARCH

An engine teardown examination was performed, and it revealed that the No. 5 connecting rod had fractured and separated from the crankshaft, which caused internal damage to the engine. The engine's internal components exhibited signs of oil starvation. Residual oil was found in the top and front of the engine crankcase.

NTSB Identification: WPR15FA236
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, August 06, 2015 in Montecito, CA
Aircraft: CESSNA 182F, registration: N5738F
Injuries: 2 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 August 6, 2015, about 2210 Pacific daylight time, a Cessna 182F, N5738F, impacted mountainous terrain about 15 miles northeast of Montecito, California. The pilot operated the rental airplane from Pacific Coast Flyers, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91, as a business cross-country flight. The pilot and one passenger were fatally injured, and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The flight had departed from the San Luis County Regional Airport (SBP), San Luis Obispo, California, at an undetermined time. The flight was destined for Mc Clellan-Palomar Airport (CRQ), Carlsbad, California. Night visual meteorological conditions prevailed for the cross-country flight, and no flight plan had been filed. 

The pilot radioed a mayday call to an air traffic controller at Point Magu Naval Air Station, and indicated that he had oil on his windscreen and smoke in the cockpit. Subsequently radio and radar contact was lost. An Alert Notification (ALNOT) was issued at 2212. The airplane was located the following morning at 0430 in mountainous terrain by the Ventura County Sheriff's Department.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department and a Search and Rescue crew accessed the site, and reported that the airplane came to rest inverted about 300 feet from the top of the ridgeline. 

The National Transportation Safety Board, Federal Aviation Administration, and Cessna Aircraft responded to the site. The airplane had impacted the mountain about 50 feet above its final resting spot. Oil was observed from the nose of the airplane to the tail cone.  A further inspection of the airplane will take place following its recovery.

No comments: