Saturday, November 25, 2017

Cessna 177, N3202T: Accident occurred August 23, 2014 at Cedar Mills Airport (3T0), Gordonville, Grayson County, Texas

Additional Participating Entities:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Irving, Texas
Textron Aviation; Wichita, Kansas

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Gordonville, TX
Accident Number: CEN14LA451
Date & Time: 08/23/2014, 1015 CDT
Registration: N3202T
Aircraft: CESSNA 177
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event:  Loss of control on ground
Injuries:  2 Serious, 2 Minor
Flight Conducted Under:  Part 91: General Aviation - Personal


The pilot reported that he flew a visual approach with a left crosswind to a turf runway. As the airplane descended below a tree line, the wind decreased, and the airplane drifted left during the landing roll. The pilot applied right rudder, but the airplane did not respond. The airplane departed the left side of the runway and impacted multiple trees. Examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation. After the accident, the pilot stated that he believed the passenger's foot might have blocked the rudder pedals. The accident is consistent with a loss of directional control during a crosswind landing.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: 
A loss of directional control during a crosswind landing.


Directional control - Not attained/maintained (Cause)

Environmental issues:  
Crosswind - Response/compensation
Tree(s) - Contributed to outcome

Factual Information 

On August 23, 2014, about 1015 central daylight time, a Cessna 177 airplane, N3202T, impacted trees during landing rollout at Cedar Mills Airport (3T0), Gordonville, Texas. The pilot and front seat passenger were seriously injured and the two rear seat passengers received minor injuries. The airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to and operated by a private individual under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and no flight plan was filed. The flight originated from Lakeview Airport (30F), Lake Dallas, Texas about 0945.

The pilot stated that during a visual approach to Runway 25 at 3T0 he utilized left aileron and right rudder control inputs, based on a crosswind from the south. As the airplane descended below a tree line, the wind decreased and the airplane drifted to the left. During touchdown and rollout on the turf runway, the airplane continued to drift to the left. The pilot attempted to input right rudder, but felt like his input was not having any effect. The airplane subsequently departed the left side of the runway and impacted multiple trees. Examination of the airplane revealed extensive damage to both wings and the fuselage. After the accident, the pilot stated that the lack of rudder effect may have been due to the front seat passenger's foot blocking a rudder pedal.

At 1015 the weather observation station at North Texas Regional Airport (GYI), Denison, Texas, located about 10 miles southeast of the accident site, reported the following conditions: wind 200 degrees at 11 knots, visibility 10 miles, clear skies, temperature 31 degrees Celsius (C), dew point 17 degrees C, altimeter setting 30.02 inches of mercury.

Examination of the airplane revealed normal flight control continuity. The pilot seat was found fully engaged on the rails and locked in position. No secondary seat stop was observed. The front passenger seat was displaced to the left and separated from the rails. The aft bench was secured to the floor. All seat restraint belts were still attached to the corresponding structure and no torn stitches were observed. There airplane was not equipped with shoulder harnesses. Examination of the airframe and engine revealed no evidence of mechanical malfunctions or failures that would have precluded normal operation.

History of Flight

Landing-landing roll:
Loss of control on ground (Defining event)
Runway excursion 

Pilot Information

Age: 61
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Lap Only
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 08/12/2013
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 03/25/2014
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 289 hours (Total, all aircraft), 73 hours (Total, this make and model), 110 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 54 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 23 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)
Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: CESSNA
Registration: N3202T
Model/Series: 177
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1967
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 17700502
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 08/11/2013, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2350 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 2966 Hours
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: Installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: 0-320 SERIES
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: KGYI, 749 ft msl
Observation Time: 1015 CDT
Distance from Accident Site: 10 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 138°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 31°C / 17°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 11 knots, 200°
Visibility (RVR): 
Altimeter Setting: 30.02 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Lake Dallas, TX (30F)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Gordonville, TX (3T0)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 0945 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: Cedar Mills Airport (3T0)
Runway Surface Type: Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 640 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 25
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 3000 ft / 60 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Straight-in

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Serious, 2 Minor
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Serious, 2 Minor
Latitude, Longitude:  33.839444, -96.808889 (est)

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