Monday, February 12, 2018

Kitfox IV 1200 , N76478: Accident occurred February 11, 2018 at Carson Airport (KCXP), Carson City, Nevada

Analysis

The pilot receiving instruction in the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that he taxied to a runway for takeoff and then realized that the wind favored the opposite runway. He taxied to the opposite runway, performed a run-up, and discussed the takeoff and traffic pattern procedures with the flight instructor. After takeoff and completing a circuit in the pattern, while on final approach in gusting wind conditions, the flight instructor took the flight controls to correct the airplane's alignment with the runway. The pilot receiving instruction added that the flight instructor corrected the alignment and landed the airplane. After landing, a wind gust pushed the airplane to the right, and the airplane exited the runway and impacted sagebrush.

The flight instructor reported that, before the flight, he told the pilot receiving instruction that it was "not a flying day" and suggested practicing wind correction during taxi. He added that they decided to taxi down the runway to the first turnoff, but the pilot receiving instruction applied takeoff power and, he did not know why. He added that the airplane became airborne and that he took control during final, landing, and the landing roll but was not able to maintain directional control. He applied full power to go around but "chose to wheel land in the small sagebrush" instead.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage.

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

The automated weather observation station located on the airport reported that, about 5 minutes before the accident, the wind was from 210° at 9 knots, gusting to 26 knots. The airplane landed on runway 27. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be: 

The flight instructor's failure to maintain directional control during the landing roll and lateral control during the go-around in gusting crosswind conditions. Contributing to the accident was the lack of communication between the flight instructor and the pilot receiving instruction. 

Findings

Aircraft
Lateral/bank control - Not attained/maintained (Cause)
Directional control - Not attained/maintained (Cause)

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Instructor/check pilot (Cause)
Lack of communication - Flight crew (Factor)

Environmental issues
Crosswind - Effect on operation
Gusts - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing
Other weather encounter
Loss of control on ground
Runway excursion

Approach-VFR go-around
Loss of control in flight (Defining event)

Collision with terr/obj (non-CFIT)

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Reno, Nevada

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf


Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pub

http://registry.faa.gov/N76478

Location: Carson City, NV
Accident Number: GAA18CA123
Date & Time: 02/11/2018, 1240 PST
Registration: N76478
Aircraft: OLIVER LAWRENCE R KITFOX IV 1200
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 

The student pilot in the tailwheel-equipped airplane reported that he taxied to a runway for takeoff, then realized the wind favored the opposite runway. He taxied to the opposite runway, performed a runup, and discussed the takeoff and traffic pattern procedures with the flight instructor. After takeoff, and having completed a circuit in the pattern, while on final approach in gusting wind conditions, the flight instructor took the flight controls to correct the airplane's alignment with the runway. He added that the flight instructor corrected the alignment and landed the airplane. After landing, a wind gust pushed the airplane to the right, and the airplane exited the runway and impacted sagebrush.

The flight instructor reported that, prior to the flight, he told the pilot receiving instruction that it was "not a flying day" and suggested practicing wind correction during taxi. He added that, they decided to taxi down the runway to the first turnoff, but the student pilot applied takeoff power and that he did not know why. He added that the airplane became airborne, and that he took control during final, landing, and, during the landing roll, but was not able to maintain directional control. He applied full power to go around, but "chose to wheel land in the small sagebrush" instead.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage.

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

A review of recorded data from the automated weather observation station located on the airport reported that, about 5 minutes before the accident, the wind was from 210° at 9 knots, gusting 26 knots. The airplane landed on runway 27. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 37, 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: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 02/28/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 200 hours (Total, all aircraft), 143 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft) 

Flight Instructor Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 77, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Multi-engine; Airplane Single-engine; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 11/14/2016
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time: 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: OLIVER LAWRENCE R
Registration: N76478
Model/Series: KITFOX IV 1200 IV
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1995
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental Light Sport
Serial Number: DCU021
Landing Gear Type: Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 01/17/2018, Condition
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1200 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 1826.6 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Rotax
ELT: C91A installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: 912UL
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 80 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: KCXP, 4699 ft msl
Observation Time: 2035 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 186°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 13°C / -10°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 9 knots/ 26 knots, 210°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 29.75 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Carson City, NV (CXP)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Carson City, NV (CXP)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1230 PST
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: CARSON (CXP)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 4704 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 27
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 6101 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Full Stop; Traffic Pattern

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude:  39.192222, -119.731667 (est)

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