Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Piper PA-32R-301, N25WE: Accident occurred May 14, 2018 at Star Hill Golf Club Airport (60NC), Cape Carteret, Carteret County, North Carolina

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Greensboro, North Carolina

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

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

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board:  https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

http://registry.faa.gov/N25WE

Location: Cape Carteret, NC
Accident Number: GAA18CA281
Date & Time: 05/14/2018, 1230 EDT
Registration: N25WE
Aircraft: PIPER PA 32R
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Abnormal runway contact
Injuries: 2 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

Analysis 

According to the pilot in the retractable-landing gear-equipped airplane, he set up for an extended final approach to the sandy turf runway. He waited until he cleared the trees and "then…dropped down to land." The main landing gear touched down first, followed by the nose landing gear. The main and nose landing gear collapsed upon contact with the runway. The pilot reported that the airplane slid about 300 ft before it came to a stop on the right side of the runway.

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

The Federal Aviation Administration aviation safety inspector who examined the airplane at the accident site reported that witnesses stated that the pilot landed the airplane hard on the sandy turf surface. However, the pilot stated that he did not. However, the pilot did state that he really had to bring the airplane in steep over the trees to get it on the runway.

Photographs provided by the operator showed vertical deformation of both wings at the main landing gear mount location.

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
The pilot's steep approach, which resulted in a hard landing and the collapse of the landing gear during touchdown.

Findings

Aircraft
Descent rate - Not attained/maintained (Cause)
Main landing gear - Capability exceeded (Cause)

Personnel issues
Aircraft control - Pilot (Cause)

Factual Information

History of Flight

Landing-landing roll
Landing gear collapse
Abnormal runway contact (Defining event) 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 38, 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): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 03/02/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 01/13/2017
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 600 hours (Total, all aircraft), 250 hours (Total, this make and model), 425 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 44 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 1.2 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: PIPER
Registration: N25WE
Model/Series: PA 32R 300
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1981
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 32R-8113039
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 6
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 11/15/2017, Unknown
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3600 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 6025 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: IO-540-K1G5D
Registered Owner: AXIOM CAPITAL SOLUTIONS LLC
Rated Power: 300
Operator: AXIOM CAPITAL SOLUTIONS LLC
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KNJM, 22 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 2 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1657 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 146°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 13 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: / None
Wind Direction: 230°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.09 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 26°C / 22°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Burlington, NC (BUY)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: VFR
Destination: Cape Carteret, NC (60NC)
Type of Clearance: VFR Flight Following
Departure Time: 1115 EDT
Type of Airspace: Class D

Airport Information

Airport: STAR HILL GOLF CLUB (60NC)
Runway Surface Type: Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 40 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 06
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 2800 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Go Around; Traffic Pattern

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 None
Latitude, Longitude:  34.705278, -77.051111 (est)

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