Thursday, November 2, 2017

Piper PA-32R-300 Cherokee Lance, N4213F, Peavy LLC: Accident occurred October 30, 2017 in Dawsonville, Dawson County, Georgia

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Atlanta, Georgia

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Peavy LLC:

Location: Dawsonville, GA
Accident Number: ANC18LA006
Date & Time: 10/30/2017, 0826 EDT
Registration: N4213F
Aircraft: PIPER PA 32R-300
Injuries: 1 Serious
Flight Conducted Under:  Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

On October 30, 2017, about 0826 eastern daylight time, a Piper PA-32R airplane, N4213F, sustained substantial damage during a forced landing on an asphalt race track about 4 miles west-northwest of Dawsonville, Georgia. The private pilot sustained serious injuries. The airplane was registered to Peavy LLC and was being operated as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91 instrument flight rules (IFR) flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and an IFR flight had been filed. The flight departed Gainesville, Georgia (GVL) about 0807 destined for Gary, Indiana (GYY).

According to the pilot, while climbing through 8,000 ft mean sea level (msl) to an assigned altitude of 10,000 ft msl, he heard a sound consistent with a prop governor overspeed which lasted about 5 seconds before returning to normal. Coinciding with the sound, was a low oil quantity light and a reading of zero on the oil pressure gauge. After declaring an emergency, the pilot began a descent for an emergency landing. When the aircraft was passing through about 5,000 ft msl, the pilot heard a loud "pop or bang" and saw a puff of smoke emit from under the engine cowling and smoke entered the cockpit through the cabin heat system. Around 3,500 ft msl, the pilot tried to add some power before sensing a "bad vibration" that felt as if a propeller blade had separated. About the same time as the vibration, the engine lost power.

Seeing an asphalt racetrack below, the pilot selected one of the straight sections of track for landing. As the airplane neared the surface, a white truck moved in the way and the pilot veered the airplane left to avoid a collision. Following the maneuver, the airplane's right wing struck a dirt berm, resulting in substantial damage.

An on-site examination of the airplane by a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) aviation safety inspector revealed that the bottom of the fuselage was coated in oil and the engine crank case was fractured at the upper aft attach bolts of the number six cylinder. All three propeller blades were present, with only one blade exhibiting signs of damage. The damaged blade was bent aft with no significant signs of leading edge damage or scaring. The two remaining blades were free of impact damage.

The closest official weather observation station is GVL, which is located about 20 miles southeast of the accident site. At 0753, a METAR was reporting, in part, wind 270° at 8 knots; visibility 10 statute miles; clouds and ceiling clear; temperature 36° F; dew point 28° F; altimeter 29.96 inches of Mercury.

The airplane was equipped with a Lycoming TIO-540 series engine. A detailed examination is pending.

DAWSONVILLE, Ga. - An airplane made a crash landing at Atlanta Motorsports Park in Dawsonville, according to the FAA. The aircraft is a Piper P32R-300.

“Experienced some mechanical issues in flight. Stated that the cockpit filled up with smoke and so basically he was looking for a place to land,” said Deputy Chief Tim Satterfield, Dawson County Emergency Services.

The crash occurred around 8:30 a.m. Monday morning. The aircraft departed from Lee Gilmer Memorial Airport in Gainesville, Georgia and was going to the Gary/Chicago International Airport in Gary, Indiana.

“He saw this area with a lot of asphalt and he tried to put it down there and had a crash landing,” the deputy chief said.

The pilot was the only person on board, and the plane was having a mechanical issue that led to the emergency landing, according to Satterfield.

“The pilot did self-extricate himself we transported him via helicopter to Northeast Georgia Medical Center,” said Satterfield.

The pilot was flown to the hospital in serious but stable condition, according to officials.

Satterfield said the plane came to rest on the Go-Kart track. No one on the ground was injured. Satterfield credits luck and pilot skill knowing the crash could’ve been a lot worse.

“Oh, yes! A lot worse especially with the rural area too. If he had gotten into the woods or a mountainous area, it could’ve been a lot worse,” said Satterfield.

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