Saturday, February 10, 2018

Cirrus SR22, N929DE, registered to Lakeview Aviation LLC and operated by a private individual: Accident occurred July 09, 2017 near Corydon Airport (0E9), Wayne County, Iowa

Story and video ➤  http://whotv.com

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

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Des Moines, Iowa
Cirrus Aircraft; Duluth, Minnesota
Continental Motors Inc; Mobile, Alabama

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/N929DE


Analysis 

Before takeoff, the private pilot completed an engine run-up and noted no anomalies. However, witnesses and the passenger described the engine as "pinging," "popping," and "skipping a beat" during the takeoff roll and shortly after takeoff. The pilot turned the airplane on course toward the destination when the "engine started sputtering and died." The pilot attempted an engine restart by turning on the fuel boost pump, switching fuel tanks, checking the mixture lever, and cycling the magneto switch; he was unable to restart the engine. Due to the low altitude at the time of the loss of engine power, the pilot did not deploy the airframe parachute system and instead performed a forced landing to a wooded area. Damage to the crankshaft prevented a functional test of the engine; however, a teardown examination revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
A total loss of engine power for reasons that could not be determined because postaccident examination of the engine and airframe did not reveal any anomalies that would have precluded normal operation.

Findings

Environmental issues
Tree(s) - Contributed to outcome

Not determined
Not determined - Unknown/Not determined (Cause)

Factual Information

On July 9, 2017, about 1619 central daylight time, a Cirrus SR22 airplane, N929DE, impacted trees during a forced landing following a loss of engine power near Corydon, Iowa. The private pilot and passenger sustained serious injuries, and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to Lakeview Aviation LLC and operated by a private individual under Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and a flight plan was not filed. The flight departed the Corydon Airport (0E9) about 1614 and was destined for the Centerville Municipal Airport (TVK), Centerville, Iowa.

Prior to takeoff, the pilot completed an engine run-up with no problems noted. Shortly after takeoff, the pilot turned the airplane toward TVK when the "engine started sputtering and died." The pilot attempted an engine restart by turning on the boost pump, switching fuel tanks, checking the mixture lever, and cycling the magneto switch; however, the engine restart was unsuccessful. Due to the low altitude at the time of the loss of engine power, the pilot did not deploy the Cirrus Airframe Parachute System and performed a forced landing to a wooded area. The pilot reported the airplane contained 40 gallons of fuel at the time of takeoff.

According to the passenger, who was interviewed by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector after the accident, the pilot planned to go to TVK for fuel since there was no fuel at 0E9. During the turn toward TVK, she heard and felt the engine lose power. She stated the pilot attempted to restart the engine, but nothing he was doing was working. The passenger reported that the airplane usually sounds like a hot rod car, but after takeoff, it sounded like it kept skipping a beat.

According to local authorities and witnesses, the airplane departed 0E9 after a local fly-in event. Witnesses described the engine as "pinging or popping" during the takeoff roll. The airplane departed the grass runway and witnesses lost sight of the airplane. One witness became concerned based on his observation of the airplane during the takeoff about whether the airplane had crashed. The witness then departed in his airplane to search for the accident airplane. The airplane was located by search personnel about 1/2 miles east of 0E9.

The airplane came to rest upright and right-wing low in the trees about 10 ft above the ground. Both wings and the forward fuselage structure were fragmented. The instrument panel, firewall, and engine were displaced down toward the terrain. The three-bladed propeller assembly was separated from the engine. The engine crankshaft propeller flange remained attached to the propeller hub, and the engine crankshaft was fractured near the flange.

A Garmin Aera 796 GPS device was recovered from the accident site and sent to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) for examination and data extraction. The device was undamaged and data was downloaded normally using the manufacturer's software. The data extracted included one track log session which consisted of 9,999 data points from multiple events ranging from April 20, 2017, to July 9, 2017. The accident flight was recorded which started at 16:14:55 and ended at 16:19:34.

An Avidyne Multifunction Display (MFD) Compact Flash Card was recovered from the cockpit MFD and sent to the NTSB Vehicle Recorder Laboratory for examination and data extraction. An examination revealed the compact flash card was undamaged. The card would not read in an NTSB surrogate unit, and a binary copy was sent to Avidyne for further examination. According to Avidyne, the MFD unit was not configured to record, and no non-volatile memory data was available.

On October 24, 2017, at Continental Motors Inc., Mobile, Alabama, the engine was examined and disassembled under the supervision of the NTSB investigator-in-charge. Due to a bent engine crankshaft, the engine could not be functionally tested. Disassembly of the engine and functional testing of the engine components revealed no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. A reason for the loss of engine power could not be determined.

History of Flight

Initial climb
Loss of engine power (total) (Defining event)

Emergency descent
Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)



Location: Corydon, IA

Accident Number: CEN17LA263
Date & Time: 07/09/2017, 1619 CDT
Registration: N929DE
Aircraft: CIRRUS DESIGN CORP SR22
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (total)
Injuries: 2 Serious
Flight Conducted Under:  Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On July 9, 2017, about 1619 central daylight time, a Cirrus SR22 airplane, N929DE, impacted trees during a forced landing following a loss of engine power near Corydon, Iowa. The private pilot and passenger sustained serious injuries, and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to Lakeview Aviation LLC and operated by a private individual under Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and a flight plan was not filed. The flight departed the Corydon Airport (0E9) about 1614 and was destined for the Centerville Municipal Airport (TVK), Centerville, Iowa.


Prior to takeoff, the pilot completed an engine run-up with no problems noted. Shortly after takeoff, the pilot turned the airplane toward TVK when the "engine started sputtering and died." The pilot attempted an engine restart by turning on the boost pump, switching fuel tanks, checking the mixture lever, and cycling the magneto switch; however, the engine restart was unsuccessful. Due to the low altitude at the time of the loss of engine power, the pilot did not deploy the Cirrus Airframe Parachute System and performed a forced landing to a wooded area. The pilot reported the airplane contained 40 gallons of fuel at the time of takeoff.


According to the passenger, who was interviewed by a Federal Aviation Administration inspector after the accident, the pilot planned to go to TVK for fuel since there was no fuel at 0E9. During the turn toward TVK, she heard and felt the engine lose power. She stated the pilot attempted to restart the engine, but nothing he was doing was working. The passenger reported that the airplane usually sounds like a hot rod car, but after takeoff, it sounded like it kept skipping a beat.


According to local authorities and witnesses, the airplane departed 0E9 after a local fly-in event. Witnesses described the engine as "pinging or popping" during the takeoff roll. The airplane departed the grass runway and witnesses lost sight of the airplane. One witness became concerned based on his observation of the airplane during the takeoff about whether the airplane had crashed. The witness then departed in his airplane to search for the accident airplane. The airplane was located by search personnel about 1/2 miles east of 0E9.


The airplane came to rest upright and right-wing low in the trees about 10 ft above the ground. Both wings and the forward fuselage structure were fragmented. The instrument panel, firewall, and engine were displaced down toward the terrain. The three-bladed propeller assembly was separated from the engine. The engine crankshaft propeller flange remained attached to the propeller hub, and the engine crankshaft was fractured near the flange.


A Garmin Aera 796 GPS device was recovered from the accident site and sent to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) for examination and data extraction. The device was undamaged and data was downloaded normally using the manufacturer's software. The data extracted included one track log session which consisted of 9,999 data points from multiple events ranging from April 20, 2017, to July 9, 2017. The accident flight was recorded which started at 16:14:55 and ended at 16:19:34.


An Avidyne Multifunction Display (MFD) Compact Flash Card was recovered from the cockpit MFD and sent to the NTSB Vehicle Recorder Laboratory for examination and data extraction. An examination revealed the compact flash card was undamaged. The card would not read in an NTSB surrogate unit, and a binary copy was sent to Avidyne for further examination. According to Avidyne, the MFD unit was not configured to record, and no non-volatile memory data was available.


On October 24, 2017, at Continental Motors Inc., Mobile, Alabama, the engine was examined and disassembled under the supervision of the NTSB investigator-in-charge. Due to a bent engine crankshaft, the engine could not be functionally tested. Disassembly of the engine and functional testing of the engine components revealed no anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. A reason for the loss of engine power could not be determined. 


Pilot Information

Certificate: Private

Age: 63, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 07/21/2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/27/2017
Flight Time:  1260 hours (Total, all aircraft), 34 hours (Total, this make and model), 1260 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information


Aircraft Manufacturer: CIRRUS DESIGN CORP

Registration: N929DE
Model/Series: SR22 NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2002
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 0293
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 02/16/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3400 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 35 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 896 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: CONT MOTOR
ELT: C126 installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: IO-550-N7
Registered Owner: Lakeview Aviation LLC
Rated Power: 310 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: TVK
Observation Time: 1615 CDT
Distance from Accident Site: 16 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 90°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 31°C / 21°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 10 knots, 220°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 29.95 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Precipitation
Departure Point: Corydon, IA (0E9)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Centerville, IA (TVK)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1614 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class E 

Wreckage and Impact Information


Crew Injuries: 1 Serious

Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Serious
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Serious
Latitude, Longitude: 40.775278, -93.232778

NTSB Identification: CEN17LA263

14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Sunday, July 09, 2017 in Corydon, IA
Aircraft: CIRRUS DESIGN CORP SR22, registration: N929DE
Injuries: 2 Serious.

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 9, 2017, about 1615 central daylight time, a Cirrus SR22 single-engine airplane, N929DE, impacted trees during an emergency descent near Corydon, Iowa. The private pilot and passenger sustained serious injuries, and the airplane sustained substantial damage. The airplane was registered to and operated by a private individual under Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and a flight plan was not filed. The flight departed the Corydon Airport (0E9) about 1610.


According to local authorities and witnesses, the airplane departed 0E9 after a local fly-in event. Witnesses described the engine as "pinging or popping" during the takeoff roll. The airplane departed the grass runway and witnesses lost sight of the airplane. One witness became concerned based on his observation of the airplane during the takeoff about whether the airplane had crashed. The witness then departed in his airplane to search for the accident airplane. The airplane was located by search personnel about 1/2 miles east of 0E9. The airplane came to rest upright in trees about 10 ft above the ground.



DES MOINES, Iowa -- Craig Comstock remembers everything that happened on Sunday, July 9, when his single engine plane crashed shortly after taking off from the Corydon airport.

"As we took off, I got about 200 feet off the ground and I realized that there was a problem."

Comstock, who has had his pilot's license for 15 years, had to think quickly, and remembered something he had read. “I read a lot of NTSB reports over the years, the safety reports from the NTSB and a lot of the aviation magazines, and I read that one of the best places in that scenario to set a plane down is in a grove of trees," said Comstock. "Especially the upper part of the trees where the limbs will absorb a lot of that impact."

So, that's exactly what he did.

"About 30, 40 seconds out, after I made that decision I said a prayer," recounted Comstock. "I said, 'Dear Lord, please let Mary, my wife, walk away from this,' and then I turned to Mary before impact and I said, 'I'm sorry, sweetie,' and then we hit the trees."

Mary said the whole thing was surreal.

"Craig tells me, says, 'I'm really sorry, sweetie, here comes the trees,' and I personally thought, 'this is it.'"

But it wasn't.

"Go through the trees, flap, flap, flap, and then we stop and I realized I was alive," said Mary. "I had blood on my leg and my arm was messed up."

Grateful to have survived the impact of the crash, Craig and Mary turned their attention to the next danger facing them.

"Then we smelled the fuel and we heard the fuel running out the wings, and that was a scary moment because then I thought, 'okay, great, we made it this far, now we're going to burn up in this thing,'" said Mary.

"She was able to get out to the ground and we realized that there was fuel flowing, still flowing out of the broken wings onto the ground for quite some time and I'm just thinking, 'okay, Lord, this it,'" said Craig. "I had resigned myself to the fact that I was going to burn up in a post-crash fire."

But thanks to the help of first responders, and doctors and perhaps some divine intervention, a new chapter is just beginning for Craig and Mary Comstock.

The Comstocks believe that they survived the crash for a reason, and that God has a purpose for them, as explained by Craig:

"I told the surgeons here at the hospital that fixed me back up, I said, 'you guys are wonderful at putting back together things that you can see, but I'm here to tell you the Creator of the universe works behind the scenes putting together things that you can't see.'"

Story and video ➤  http://whotv.com

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