Friday, April 27, 2018

Magni M-24, N3PW: Accident occurred April 14, 2018 at Fayette Regional Air Center Airport (3T5), La Grange, Texas

Additional Participating Entity:
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Houston, Texas

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/N3PW 


Analysis 

The gyroplane pilot reported that, during taxi to the runway for takeoff, he began the pre-rotation of the rotor. As he turned the gyroplane to the right onto the runway, a "strong gust" of wind tilted the gyroplane to the left, and the rotor struck the ground. Subsequently, the gyroplane came to rest on its left side.

The gyroplane sustained substantial damage to the tailboom.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the gyroplane 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 320° at 17 knots, gusting 26 knots. The gyroplane was departing runway 34. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's failure to maintain lateral control while taxiing onto the runway in gusting wind conditions.

Findings

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

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)

Environmental issues
Gusts - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Taxi-into takeoff position
Other weather encounter
Loss of control on ground (Defining event)

Taxi
Roll over

Location: La Grange, TX
Accident Number: GAA18CA217
Date & Time: 04/14/2018, 1300 CDT
Registration: N3PW
Aircraft: SMITH DENNIS P MAGNI M24
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of control on ground
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

The gyroplane pilot reported that, during taxi to the runway for takeoff, he began the pre-rotation of the rotor. He added that, as he turned the gyroplane to the right onto the runway, a "strong gust" of wind tilted the gyroplane to the left, and the rotor struck the ground. Subsequently, the gyroplane came to rest on its left side.

The gyroplane sustained substantial damage to the tailboom.

The pilot reported that there were no preaccident mechanical failures or malfunctions with the gyroplane 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 320° at 17 knots, gusting 26 knots. The gyroplane was departing runway 34. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Foreign; Private; Sport Pilot
Age: 71, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): Gyroplane
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed:  No
Medical Certification: Sport Pilot Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 05/30/2013
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 1550 hours (Total, all aircraft), 450 hours (Total, this make and model), 1550 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: SMITH DENNIS P
Registration: N3PW
Model/Series: MAGNI M24 UNDESIGNATED
Aircraft Category: Gyroplane
Year of Manufacture: 2011
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 24-10-5934
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection:  Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 1212 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 650 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Rotax
ELT: Not installed
Engine Model/Series: 914
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 115 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: K3T5, 324 ft msl
Observation Time: 1755 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 343°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 17°C / 2°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility:  10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 17 knots/ 26 knots, 320°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.02 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: La Grange, TX (3T5)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: Unknown
Destination:
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 1300 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class G

Airport Information

Airport: FAYETTE RGNL AIR CENTER (3T5)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 324 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 34
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 5000 ft / 75 ft
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: 29.901667, -96.947778 (est)

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