Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Mooney M20E, N6002Q: Accident occurred November 26, 2017 near Ryan Field Airport (KRYN), Tucson, Pima County, Arizona

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Scottsdale, Arizona

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

National Transportation Safety Board - Aviation Accident Factual Report 

Location: Tucson, AZ
Accident Number: GAA18CA059
Date & Time: 11/26/2017, 1600 MST
Registration: N6002Q
Aircraft: MOONEY M20
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Fuel starvation
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

The pilot reported that during the preflight inspection, in preparation for the local flight to accomplish 3 touch-and-go landings, he removed the fuel filler caps and visually confirmed what appeared to be an adequate amount of fuel in each tank. The pilot did not use the fuel dip stick to confirm the quantity.

The pilot reported that the fuel selector was selected to the right-side fuel tank prior to departure. After the second takeoff, about 600 ft above ground level (agl), and just before turning crosswind, the engine surged once or twice, and then experienced a total loss of engine power. The pilot checked the engine controls and made a left turn back toward the runway. About 300 ft agl, he switched the fuel selector to the left fuel tank. Seconds later, the engine regained power, however the airplane had descended low enough that the airplane collided with the top(s) of mesquite brush and then the ground.

A postaccident examination of the airplane revealed that the right fuel tank was empty, and the left fuel tank contained about 10 gallons of fuel. There was no evidence of a breach or fuel leak.

The fuselage was substantially damaged.

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

Pilot Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 74, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Multi-engine Land; Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
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: 03/12/2016
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 11/10/2016
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 2135 hours (Total, all aircraft), 300 hours (Total, this make and model), 1996 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: MOONEY
Registration: N6002Q
Model/Series: M20 E
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1966
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 860
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 10/31/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2575 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 4260 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: LYCOMING
ELT: C126 installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: IO-360
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 0 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: KRYN, 2418 ft msl
Observation Time: 2247 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 1 Nautical Miles
Direction from Accident Site: 59°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Temperature/Dew Point: 32°C / -2°C
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility: 10 Miles
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 7 knots, 310°
Visibility (RVR):
Altimeter Setting: 30.01 inches Hg
Visibility (RVV):
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Tucson, AZ (RYN)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Tucson, AZ (RYN)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 1555 MST
Type of Airspace: Class D 

Airport Information

Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 2418 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 33
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 4000 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Touch and Go; Traffic Pattern 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: In-Flight
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  32.141667, -111.183333 (est)

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