Saturday, January 27, 2018

Vans RV-10, N9738J, regisiered to Gemini Professionals LLC: Accident occurred December 07, 2017 near Limon Municipal Airport (KLIC), Lincoln County, Colorado

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Denver, Colorado

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: 

Gemini Professionals LLC:

Location: Limon, CO

Accident Number: GAA18CA075
Date & Time: 12/07/2017, 1950 MST
Registration: N9738J
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Miscellaneous/other
Injuries: 1 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 


The pilot reported that, during a night approach, the runway precision approach path indicator lights indicated that the airplane was on a proper glidepath. Shortly after, the airplane encountered a "strong gust of wind" and "lost significant altitude." He added engine power and raised the airplane's nose to intercept the glidepath. A few seconds later, he felt a slight bump and heard a scraping noise to his right. He looked to the right, and when he returned his focus to the approaching runway, he noticed that the airport lights were no longer lit, and the airport was in "complete darkness." He added that he "couldn't really see anything and wasn't sure exactly where the runway was, [but he] knew [he] was going to have a hard landing." He then pulled the power back, moved the mixture to idle cut off, and turned the fuel selector off. Subsequently, the airplane landed hard off the runway, bounced, slid sideways, struck a tree, and then came to rest.

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

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

Following the accident, it was discovered that, during the approach, the airplane struck a power line that supplied the airport power.

The automated weather observation system at the accident airport reported that, about the time of the accident, the wind was from 330° at 6 knots. The pilot was on a visual approach for runway 34.

According to the Federal Aviation Administration inspector assigned to the accident, the power line was estimated to be 75 ft above the ground and 1/2 mile from the runway threshold. The power line crossed perpendicular to the runway.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: 
The pilot's unstabilized approach and failure to go around at night, which resulted in the airplane impacting a power line and a subsequent hard landing.


Descent/approach/glide path - Not attained/maintained (Cause)

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)
Decision making/judgment - Pilot (Cause)

Environmental issues
Wire - Effect on operation (Cause)
Gusts - Effect on operation
Dark - Effect on personnel
Tree(s) - Contributed to outcome

Factual Information

History of Flight

Other weather encounter
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Hard landing
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 45, Male 
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
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: 09/01/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 03/23/2017
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 355 hours (Total, all aircraft), 259.4 hours (Total, this make and model), 315 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 109.9 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 28.4 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: JONES KENT C
Registration: N9738J
Model/Series: VANS RV-10 NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2010
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 40296
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 10/05/2017, 100 Hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2700 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 925 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: IO-540-X
Rated Power: 290 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Night/Dark
Observation Facility, Elevation: KLIC, 5374 ft msl
Observation Time: 0255 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 270°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: -3°C / -12°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 6 knots, 330°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.14 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: OLATHE, KS (OJC)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Limon, CO (LIC)
Type of Clearance: VFR; VFR Flight Following
Departure Time: 1745 CST
Type of Airspace: Class G 

Airport Information

Runway Surface Type: Concrete
Airport Elevation: 5374 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Unknown
Runway Used: 34
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 4700 ft / 60 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Precautionary Landing; Traffic Pattern

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Minor
Latitude, Longitude:  39.275000, -103.665833 (est)

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