Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Acro Sport II, N896JC: Accident occurred July 30, 2017 in Loudonville, Ashland County, Ohio

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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; North Olmsted, Ohio
Lycoming Engines; Williamsport, Pennsylvania

Aviation Accident Factual 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/N896JC



Location: Loudonville, OH
Accident Number: CEN17LA295
Date & Time: 07/30/2017, 1700 EDT
Registration: N896JC
Aircraft: STEELE ACRO SPORT  II
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (partial)
Injuries: 1 Minor, 1 None 
Flight Conducted Under:  Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On July 30, 2017, about 1700 eastern daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Steele Acro Sport II biplane, N896JC, nosed over during a forced landing following a partial loss of engine power near Loudonville, Ohio. The airline transport pilot reported he was uninjured and his passenger received minor injuries. The airplane sustained substantial wing damage during the nose over. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed in the area of the accident site about the time of the accident, and the flight was not operated on a flight plan. The flight originated from the Smith Field Airport (SMD), near Fort Wayne, Indiana, and was destined for the Holmes County Airport (10G), near Millersburg, Ohio.

The pilot's accident report indicated the purpose of the flight was to return to Brunswick, Maine, from Oshkosh, Wisconsin after it had been recently restored. The return flight was conducted through multiple legs and refueling stops, the last one being SMD.

According to operations personnel at SMD, the airplane had landed at SMD and was serviced with 15.8 gallons of 100 low lead, self-serve fuel at 1543. The airplane departed SMD with a total of 18 gallons of fuel.

About 15 miles from the 10G and 1:15 hours into the flight, the pilot initiated a descent from 3,500 ft to 2,500 ft. When the pilot added power to level off, the engine began to run rough. The pilot said that he immediately applied carburetor heat and he observed no engine operation improvement. The engine continued to lose power and "sputter." The pilot selected a field for a forced landing. However, during the descent, the "undulating" features of the field were noticed. The pilot elected to land the airplane upslope, it rolled a short distance, regained flight at the crest of a hill, and touched down at the edge of a soy bean field. The airplane decelerated rapidly and nosed over.

Inspectors from the Federal Aviation Administration conducted a postaccident examination of the wreckage. Examination of the engine and fuel system revealed no preimpact anomalies that would have precluded operation of the engine.

At 1852, the recorded weather about 19 miles and 306° degrees from the accident site at the Mansfield Lahm Regional Airport (MFD), near Mansfield, Ohio, was: Wind 340° at 8 kts; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition clear; temperature 26° C; dew point 14° C; altimeter 30.17 inches of mercury.

At 1752, the recorded weather at MFD was: Wind 360° at 9 kts; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition clear; temperature 27° C; dew point 13° C; altimeter 30.17 inches of mercury.

At 1652, the recorded weather at MFD was: Wind 340° at 11 kts; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition clear; temperature 28° C; dew point 15° C; altimeter 30.17 inches of mercury.

The recorded MFD temperature and dew point data were plotted on a carburetor icing chart. The charted data showed that the weather was conducive to serious icing at descent power near the time of the engine power loss.

The Pilot's Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge, in part, stated:

When conditions are conducive to carburetor icing during flight, periodic checks should be made to detect its presence. If detected, full carburetor heat should be applied immediately, and it should be left in the ON position until you are certain that all the ice has been removed. If ice is present, applying partial heat or leaving heat on for an insufficient time might aggravate the situation. In extreme cases of carburetor icing, even after the ice has been removed, full carburetor heat should be used to prevent further ice formation. A carburetor temperature gauge, if installed, is very useful in determining when to use carburetor heat. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Airline Transport; Flight Engineer
Age: 51, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Rear
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 1 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 05/22/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 06/19/2017
Flight Time:  14500 hours (Total, all aircraft), 24.3 hours (Total, this make and model), 4000 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 141.8 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 80 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)



Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: STEELE
Registration: N896JC
Model/Series: ACRO SPORT  II
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1986
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 689
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 07/07/2017, Condition
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1520 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time:
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: O-360-A3A
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:  KMFD, 1312 ft msl
Observation Time: 1652 EDT
Distance from Accident Site: 19 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 306°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 28°C / 15°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 11 knots, 340°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.17 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: FORT WAYNE, IN (SMD)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: MILLERSBURG, OH (10G)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time:  CDT
Type of Airspace:

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor, 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  40.632778, -82.176944 (est)




NTSB Identification: CEN17LA295
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, July 30, 2017 in Loudonville, OH
Aircraft: STEELE ACRO SPORT II, registration: N896JC
Injuries: 2 Minor.

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 July 30, 2017, about 1900 eastern daylight time, an experimental amateur-built Steele Acro Sport II biplane, N896JC, nosed over during a forced landing following a partial loss of engine power near Loudenville, Ohio. The pilot and passenger received minor injuries. The airplane sustained substantial wing damage during the nose over. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed in the area of the accident site about the time of the accident, and the flight was not operated on a flight plan. The flight originated from the Smith Field Airport (SMD), near Fort Wayne, Indiana, and was destined for the Holmes County Airport, near Millersburg, Ohio.

According to operations personnel at SMD, the airplane had landed there and self-serve fueling had been conducted at 1543. The airplane was serviced with 15.8 gallons of fuel.

At 1852, the recorded weather at the Mansfield Lahm Regional Airport, near Mansfield, Ohio, was: Wind 340° at 8 kts; visibility 10 statute miles; sky condition clear; temperature 26° C; dew point 14° C; altimeter 30.17 inches of mercury.

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