Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Van's RV-8, N8432: Accident occurred October 14, 2017 at Othello Municipal Airport (S70), Adams County, Washington

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Spokane, Washington

Aviation Accident Final 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/N8432

Analysis 

According to the pilot in the experimental, amateur-built, tailwheel-equipped airplane, during the takeoff roll on runway 25, the airplane weathervaned into the 11-knot crosswind from the south. The airplane exited the left side of the runway and struck a precision approach path indicator (PAPI) light, but the pilot continued the takeoff. During the initial climb, the passenger reported smelling fuel, but the airplane remained airborne until the fuel in the right tank was exhausted.

The pilot further reported that he was unsure if the landing gear were damaged, and he was unable to contact anyone at the airport to verify the landing gear's condition. He flew to a nearby airport, where the tower controller confirmed that the landing gear appeared undamaged. The pilot landed the airplane without further incident.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right-wing spar and the elevator.

The nearest METAR to the accident airport reported that, about the time of the accident, the wind was from 200° at 10 knots.

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

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's failure to maintain directional control during the takeoff roll in crosswind conditions. 

Findings

Aircraft
Directional control - Not attained/maintained (Cause)

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)

Environmental issues
Crosswind - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Takeoff
Other weather encounter
Runway excursion
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Location: Othello, WA
Accident Number: GAA18CA014
Date & Time: 10/14/2017, 1345 PDT
Registration: N8432
Aircraft: HIMSL VINCENT S VANS RV-8
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Collision during takeoff/land
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

According to the pilot in the experimental amateur built, tailwheel-equipped airplane, during the takeoff roll on runway 25, the airplane weathervaned into the 11kt crosswind from the south.

The airplane exited the left side of the runway and struck a precision approach path indicator (PAPI) light, but the pilot continued the takeoff. During the initial climb the passenger reported smelling fuel, but the pilot remained airborne until the fuel in the right tank was exhausted.

The pilot further reported that he was unsure if the landing gear was damaged and he was unable to contact anyone at the airport to verify the landing gear's condition. He flew to a nearby airport, where the tower confirmed that the landing gear appeared undamaged. The pilot landed the airplane without further incident.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the right-wing spar and the elevator.

The nearest METAR to the accident airport, reported that about the time of the accident, the wind was from 200° at 10kts.

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

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 68, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Front
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 5-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 01/05/2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 10/09/2016
Flight Time: (Estimated) 570 hours (Total, all aircraft), 201 hours (Total, this make and model), 509 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 3 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: HIMSL VINCENT S
Registration: N8432
Model/Series: VANS RV-8 UNDESIGNATED
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2008
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 80296
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 03/31/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1800 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 201 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Aero Sport Power
ELT: C126 installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: O-360-A2A
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 180 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KPSC, 402 ft msl
Observation Time: 2053 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 13 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 194°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 11000 ft agl
Temperature/Dew Point: 15°C / 0°C
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 10 knots, 200°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.49 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: MATTAWA, WA (M94)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Colfax, WA (S94)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 1300 PDT
Type of Airspace: Class G 

Airport Information

Airport: OTHELLO MUNI (S70)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 1148 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 25
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 4000 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Traffic Pattern 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude:  46.473889, -119.042778 (est)

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