Sunday, January 14, 2018

Cessna 170B, N1997C: Accident occurred January 11, 2018 at Murphy Field Airport (06NY), Auburn, Cayuga County, New York

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Rochester, New York

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/N1997C

Location: Auburn, NY
Accident Number: GAA18CA100
Date & Time: 01/11/2018, 1100 EST
Registration: N1997C
Aircraft: CESSNA 170
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Nose over/nose down
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

Analysis

The pilot of the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, during taxi after landing, he initially applied forward and right yoke inputs because of the tailwind but transitioned to back and left yoke inputs because the runway was soft and wet. He added that the airplane encountered a left quartering tailwind gust and spun into an adjacent soy bean field. The pilot exited the airplane to examine the damage, at which point another wind gust flipped the airplane inverted.

The pilot reported that, after he exited the airplane, he observed windshield damage before the second wind gust occurred. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the windshield.

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

The pilot reported that the wind was from the southwest between 8 and 15 knots. The airplane was taxiing north.

The Federal Aviation Administration's Airplane Flying Handbook, FAA-H-8083-3B, contained a section titled "Taxiing," which stated the following:

When taxiing with a quartering tailwind, the elevator should be held in the DOWN position, and the upwind aileron, DOWN. Since the wind is striking the airplane from behind, these control positions reduce the tendency of the wind to get under the tail and the wing and to nose the airplane over. The application of these crosswind taxi corrections helps to minimize the weathervaning tendency and ultimately results in making the airplane easier to steer.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's improper wind correction inputs while taxiing with a quartering tailwind.

Findings

Aircraft
Crosswind correction - Not attained/maintained (Cause)

Environmental issues
Tailwind - Effect on operation (Cause)
Gusts - Effect on operation
Soft surface - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Taxi-from runway
Other weather encounter
Loss of control on ground
Nose over/nose down (Defining event)

The pilot of the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that, during taxi after landing, he initially applied forward and right yoke inputs because of the tailwind, but transitioned to back and left yoke inputs because the runway was soft and wet. He added that the airplane encountered a left quartering tailwind gust and spun into an adjacent soy bean field. The pilot exited the airplane to examine the damage, when another gust of wind flipped the airplane inverted.

The pilot reported that, after he exited the airplane, he observed windshield damage prior to the second wind gust. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the windshield.

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

The pilot reported that the wind was from the southwest at 8 to 15 knots. The airplane was taxiing north.

Federal Aviation Administration's Airplane Flying Handbook, FAA-H-8083-3B, contains a section titled "Taxiing" which states:

When taxiing with a quartering tailwind, the elevator should be held in the DOWN position, and the upwind aileron, DOWN. Since the wind is striking the airplane from behind, these control positions reduce the tendency of the wind to get under the tail and the wing and to nose the airplane over. The application of these crosswind taxi corrections helps to minimize the weathervaning tendency and ultimately results in making the airplane easier to steer. 

Pilot Information

Certificate:  Airline Transport
Age: 63, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land; Single-engine Sea
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Unknown
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 11/22/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 12/01/2016
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 5215 hours (Total, all aircraft), 82 hours (Total, this make and model) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: CESSNA
Registration: N1997C
Model/Series: 170 B
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1954
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 26142
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 12/17/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2200 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 2056.9 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: CONT MOTOR
ELT:  Installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: C145 SERIES
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 145 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: KITH, 1099 ft msl
Observation Time: 1556 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 22 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 183°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 8000 ft agl
Temperature/Dew Point: 8°C / 2°C
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 11 knots, 160°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.21 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: SKANEATELES, NY (6B9)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: VFR
Destination: Auburn, NY (06NY)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1100 EST
Type of Airspace: Class G 

Airport Information

Airport: MURPHY FIELD (06NY)
Runway Surface Type: Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 1100 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Soft; Wet
Runway Used: N/A
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width:
VFR Approach/Landing: None 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries:  N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  42.842778, -76.445278 (est)

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