Friday, January 19, 2018

Piper PA-12 Super Cruiser, N4018H, registered to and operated by the pilot: Accident occurred June 17, 2017 in Skwentna Alaska

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

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Anchorage, Alaska

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Skwentna, AK
Accident Number: ANC17LA033
Date & Time: 06/17/2017, 1434 AKD
Registration: N4018H
Aircraft: PIPER PA 12
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under:  Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On June 17, 2017, about 1434 Alaska daylight time, a float-equipped Piper PA-12 airplane, N4018H, sustained substantial damage following a loss of control while landing at a remote creek near Skwentna, Alaska. The pilot was uninjured. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot, as a 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 visual flight rules external cargo load flight. Visual meteorological conditions were present at the time of the accident and no flight plan was filed. The airplane departed from a private lake in Houston, Alaska about 1409.

According to the pilot, the purpose of the flight was to transport plywood to his cabin off Indian Creek, near Skwentna. He had plywood secured to the float struts of both floats, with 2 2x8 pieces of ½ inch plywood, for a total of 120 pounds of plywood. As the pilot was landing to the south with a "light wind" condition present, at about 200 feet above the trees, the airplane made an uncommanded turn to the left. The pilot reported he applied left rudder with no response and that the rudder was "locked to the left." The pilot was unable to maintain control, the airplane impacted trees, and came to rest in an open meadow. The pilot was able to egress from the airplane without further incident.

The pilot reported no preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures with the engine. When asked about any preimpact mechanical malfunctions or failures with the airframe by the NTSB IIC, the pilot reported he had "no rudder."

In a written statement from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) aviation safety inspector (ASI) assigned to the accident on June 27, the FAA ASI reported that the pilot did not have the required external cargo load permit on file for the accident airplane.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to both wings, the fuselage, and the empennage. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: PIPER
Registration: N4018H
Model/Series: PA 12 NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
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: PATK, 356 ft msl
Observation Time: 2253 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 32 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 15°C / 8°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 9000 ft agl
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: Light and Variable, Variable
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 12000 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.95 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Houston, AK
Destination: Skwentna, AK

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:  61.922500, -150.838333 (est)

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