Friday, June 01, 2018

Loss of Control in Flight: Cirrus SR22, N670SR; fatal accident occurred May 31, 2018 at Midland International Air and Space Port Airport (KMAF), Midland County, Texas

John Mark Cooper, Student Pilot

Gavyn Cooper

John Mark Cooper

Gavyn Cooper

Aviation Accident Final Report - National Transportation Safety Board

Investigator In Charge (IIC): Scott, Arnold

The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident. 

Additional Participating Entities: 
Corey L. Wehmeyer; Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Lubbock, Texas
Gordon D Morris; Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Lubbock, Texas
Cirrus Design; Duluth, Minnesota 
Continental Motors; Mobile, Alabama 

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Midland, Texas 
Accident Number: CEN18FA204
Date & Time: May 30, 2018, 19:20 Local 
Registration: N670SR
Aircraft: Cirrus SR22 
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight 
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General aviation - Personal


The student pilot and passenger were departing on a personal flight in the student pilot's airplane. Witnesses saw the airplane climb to about 200 ft above the runway at a slow airspeed, stall, and descend in a right turn until impact with terrain. According to the pilot's wife, he regularly flew the airplane, often with passengers. No pilot logbooks or records were found and the student's flight experience could not be determined. Examination of the airplane revealed no mechanical malfunctions or anomalies that would have precluded normal operation. Given the atmospheric conditions, the density altitude about the time of the accident was 6,660 ft mean sea level (msl).

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
An inadvertent stall, resulting in an uncontrollable descent and impact with terrain. Contributing to the accident was the high density altitude.


Personnel issues Incorrect action performance - Passenger

Personnel issues Qualification/certification - Pilot

Environmental issues High density altitude - Effect on operation

Factual Information

History of Flight

Initial climb Loss of control in flight (Defining event)

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

On May 31, 2018, about 1920 central daylight time, a Cirrus Design Corp. SR22, N670SR, was destroyed when it impacted terrain shortly after takeoff from Midland International Air and Space Port Airport (MAF), Midland, Texas. The student pilot and passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was registered to and was being operated by JMC Ranches, LLC, Midland, Texas, under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the accident site at the time of the accident. The personal flight was originating at the time of the accident and was destined for Sierra Blanca Regional Airport (SRR), Ruidoso, New Mexico.

Two corporate pilots were standing on the ramp outside the fixed base operator and saw the accident airplane during its initial climb. They said that the airplane climbed to about 200 ft at a slow airspeed then stall. The right wing dropped, and the airplane descended in a right turn until impact with terrain behind the Commemorative Air Force's American Airpower Heritage Museum. A post-impact fire occurred.


The 39-year-old pilot held a student pilot certificate. His most recent third-class Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) airman medical certificate was issued on dated April 1, 2013.

According to the pilot's wife, the pilot had a horse training business, and he regularly flew the accident airplane between MAF and SRR, often with passengers.

The pilot's former flight instructor stated that the pilot had taken a 3 to 5 year "hiatus" from flying. He had flown with the pilot in a Cessna 172 from December 2016 to April 2017. When he last flew with the pilot, he estimated the pilot had accrued about 100 total hours of flight experience. The instructor stated that he never flew with the pilot in the accident airplane.


The accident airplane, serial number 2863, was manufactured in 2007. It was powered by a Continental IO-550-N 310-horsepower reciprocating engine, serial number 691467, which drove a Hartzell 3-bladed, composite, constant-speed propeller (model number PHC-33YF-1N, serial number FP6210B.

According to the airplane maintenance records, both the airframe and engine received annual inspections on December 20, 2017, at a total time of 875.1 hours. At that time, the recording tachometer read 847.6 hours.

FAA registration information indicates that the airplane was registered to JMC Ranches, LLC, on January 11, 2018. The pilot owned JMC Ranches, LLC.


The MAF automated weather observation at 1853 included wind from 150° at 9 knots; 10 miles visibility, clear sky, temperature 41°C, dew point 4°C, and an altimeter setting of 29.78 inches of mercury.

The 1952 observation included wind from 160° at 5 knots; temperature 40°C, dew point 4°C, and an altimeter setting of 29.78 inches of mercury.

Given the atmospheric conditions, the density altitude was 6,660 ft above mean sea level (msl) about the time of the accident.


The on-scene examination of the wreckage revealed a 53-ft long ground scar aligned on a magnetic heading of 270°, that led to the main wreckage. All aircraft components were accounted for, and there was no evidence of in-flight airframe, engine, or flight control malfunction or failure.


The Tarrant County Medical Examiner, Fort Worth, Texas, performed an autopsy of the pilot. According to the report, the cause of death was "multiple blunt force injuries."

The FAA's Bioaeronautical Science Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed toxicological testing on specimens of the pilot. No carboxyhemoglobin was detected in blood, and no ethanol was detected in vitreous. Tamsulosin was detected in cavity blood and in liver tissue. According to FAA's Forensic Toxicology's WebDrugs, tamsulosin is an alpha blocker used in the symptomatic treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. It is not considered to be impairing.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Student
Age: 39, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 04/01/2013
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 192 hours (Total, all aircraft), 92 hours (Total, this make and model) 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: CIRRUS
Registration: N670SR
Model/Series: SR22
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2007
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 2863
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 12/20/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3044 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 875 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT: Installed
Engine Model/Series: IO-550-N
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 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: KMAF, 2872 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site:
Observation Time: 1853 CDT
Direction from Accident Site:
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 9 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: 
Wind Direction: 150°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: 
Altimeter Setting: 29.78 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 41°C / 4°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: Midland, TX (KMAF)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: Unknown
Destination: Ruidoso, NM (KSRR)
Type of Clearance: VFR
Departure Time: 1920 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class D

Airport Information

Airport: Midland International (KMAF)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 2872 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 16R
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 9501 ft / 159 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: None

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 31.000000, -102.000000 (est)

MIDLAND, Texas (Local 2/Fox 24) - We are learning more about a fatal plane crash that occurred at Midland International Air and Spaceport last month. 

According to a preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board, there was no evidence of in-flight airframe, engine or flight control malfunction or failure. 

The NTSB also confirmed in a release that a student pilot was operating the aircraft just before the crash.

According to FAA regulations, student pilots cannot legally fly with passengers. 

"So while you're considered a student pilot you are essentially flying under your CFI license and you're not allowed to do quite a bit," owner and pilot of OmniAero, Ty Mackey, said. 

Local 2 reached out to the pilot for clarification on FAA standards. He says the FAA requires at least forty hours of flight training before a student can even take a solo flight without clearance from a CFI. 

"If the CFI doesn't sign off on it or know about it you can essentially not fly anywhere and then as a student you also can never carry passengers," the pilot said.

Officials with the NTSB declined to comment on the status of the student pilot, citing an ongoing investigation.

In the crash occurred back on May 31 at MAF. Officials investigating the crash said that John Cooper and Gavyn Cooper were preparing to exit the traffic pattern when the plane went down. 

Both were killed.

John and Gavyn, according to the report, were enroute to Ruidoso, New Mexico. 

The investigation is ongoing and the NTSB says a full report could take up to a year to complete. 

Story and video ➤

Gavyn Mark Cooper
January 13, 2002 - May 31, 2018

Gavyn Mark Cooper, 16, of Midland, passed away Thursday, May 31, 2018 in Midland, Texas. Gavyn was born in Odessa, Texas. He grew up and attended schools in Midland, Texas. Gavyn was a student at Midland High School and a member of the football team.

Gavyn loved the Lord more than anything. He was a growing Christian who was devoted to Christ. Gavyn also loved football. Recently he went to the Super Bowl Game and the Cowboys Draft. His father, whom he looked up to, coached his football team when he was a youngster. Gavyn dreamed of playing professional football someday. He enjoyed many activities with his father, one of which was junior drag racing.

Like his father, Gavyn was a hard worker and worked all summer at his father’s ranch. He enjoyed studying horseracing statistics and became very knowledgeable on the subject. His career goal was to attend Texas A&M and become an engineer. He was an honor roll student, so loving and giving, and the most respectful child you’d ever met. He was a great leader and very mature for his age.

Read more here

John Mark Cooper
November 28, 1978 - May 31, 2018

John Mark Cooper passed away May 31, 2018 in Midland, Texas. A memorial service will be held at 10:00 am Saturday, June 9, 2018 at Stonegate Fellowship Church in Midland.

John Mark was born in Midland, Texas November 28, 1978. He grew up in Odessa, Texas and attended Odessa High School. John played high school football sporting the number “8” jersey. After High School John moved to Midland where he met and married his soul mate, Chassity Pullen. They were married 17 years. They have two children, Gavyn Mark Cooper and Callie Faith Cooper. John was an honest man who always kept his word. He was a loving father and a devoted husband. Callie was John’s princess and he called her his angel. Callie always said her dad was her hero.

John had a loving heart and an amazing work ethic. He had high work standards for himself and all those around him. He began working on drilling rigs for Patterson UTI Drilling Company, working his way up to rig supervisor. Later he became a drilling consultant, working for Sandridge, Devon and several other oil and gas companies. He is currently the COO and co-founder of MDC Texas Energy LLC, and independent exploration and production Company based in Midland, Texas.

John’s second passion was horses. He has loved horses since he was a toddler. Four years ago he started JMC Ranches to provide training for quarter horses and thoroughbreds.

John lived his life to the fullest and accomplished his dreams. Most importantly he loved God.

Read more here ➤

The victims of Thursday’s plane crash at Midland International Air & Space Port have been identified as a 39-year-old Midland man and his 16-year-old son.

The crash of the Cirrus SR22 airplane killed pilot John Mark Cooper, and his son, Gavyn Cooper, who was the only passenger, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

The plane — a fixed-wing, single-engine craft manufactured in 2007 — held a “valid” status, according to the Federal Aviation Administration, and the expiration of its certificate was set for January 2021. The plane is registered to JMC Ranches LLC. A John Cooper of Midland is registered as the business’ owner, according to state comptroller records.

According to the FAA, a John Mark Cooper was issued a student pilot certificate on April 1, 2013. Pilots with student pilot certificates are prohibited from carrying passengers.

The Reporter-Telegram could not confirm if the deceased John Mark Cooper is the same Cooper in the FAA’s record because the pilot’s address was withheld. However, there is only one John Mark Cooper in the FAA’s airmen database. DPS confirmed the pilot’s full name.

Robert Katz, a Dallas-based flight instructor and plane crash expert, said student pilots cannot take a plane anywhere without a flight instructor’s endorsement in the student’s logbook. “Even if he owns his own airplane, he can’t legally take it out whenever he wants,” Katz said Friday in a phone interview.

The record also indicates that a third-class medical certificate was issued in April 2013. If the pilot were under 40 years old, he would not have been allowed to fly an aircraft because the medical certificate would have expired 60 months after it was issued -- April 30, 2018 -- according to the federal government’s Electronic Code of Federal Regulations concerning pilot certification.

With 35 years of experience as a pilot, Katz said keeping medical certificates current are critical. “Knowing your medical expiration date is tantamount to knowing your birthday,” he said.

The plane crashed at about 7:30 p.m. Thursday shortly after taking off, according to a DPS press release.

“The aircraft departed from Runway 16 and was preparing to exit the traffic pattern when it crashed near the approach end of Runway 10, starting a fire,” FAA spokesman Lynn Lunsford said in a statement Thursday night.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating, and the FAA will provide assistance. The NTSB usually posts a preliminary report within a week to 10 days after a crash and it typically takes up to a year or more to complete an investigation, he said.

John and Gavyn Cooper initially were identified by Sarah Green, director of marketing and communications for Trinity School. John Cooper’s wife and Gavyn’s mother, Chassity Cooper, is a kindergarten aide at the school, Green said in an email. The victims’ daughter and sister, Callie, attends Trinity, and Gavyn previously attended the private school and was attending Midland High.

Midland High football coach Tim Anuszkiewicz said Gavyn Cooper was a quarterback on the junior varsity team last year and that he was going to be a junior next fall.

“Gavyn was a true Midland Bulldog,” Anuszkiewicz said. “He was a team player. He had a great attitude and was a really happy kid. I think that is what we are going to miss the most about not having him around, that he just brought a really good spirit to the program.”

John Cooper was a trainer at Ruidoso Downs in New Mexico, according to a press release from Ruidoso Downs.

“John M. Cooper was having the best year of his young training career after being successful in the energy business,” the release said. “Last Saturday, the Cooper-trained Pj Splash Of Joy qualified for the Grade 1, $1 million Ruidoso Futurity. Last Sunday, the Cooper trained Flight Force gained top preference to race in the $100,000 Mr Jess Perry Stakes at Ruidoso Downs. Cooper had entered Mojo Perry in the $100,000 Junos Request Stakes at Remington Park to run on Saturday night. Mojo Perry is coming off a third-place run in the Decketta Stakes.”

A request made Friday to the director of airports seeking more information about the incident was not returned. The NTSB does not comment during investigations, and the FAA refers all requests for information to the NTSB.

Original article can be found here ➤


  1. I rarely if ever comment as, being a pilot, things happen that we cannot explain however I truly hope this guy did not get a student pilot permit in 2013 and was flying an SR22 around since then pretending he knew what he was doing. I truly hope not.

    There are people dying in those airplanes that have much experience and it reaches out and bites them.

    I pray for him to rest in peace however I really pray for his poor son, mom and rest of the family that will live with knowing what happened.

    If the info was wrong and the guy was experienced and up to date, then my latter comment stands, these are slippery airplanes and can reach out and bite even very experienced pilots.


    1. Yes that is what he was doing 100 hour student pilot who never finished his training. This is one place in life where money can't help foolish.

    2. Actually, he had 192 hrs TT. He had 100hrs of time as a student pilot with instructors, and then flew his Cirrus 92hr by himself illegally.

    3. I didn't count the illegal flying hours not always by himself according to his wife he regulars took passengers. The ones who flew with him I bet they got a shock. Unless there is an incident FAA likely never find out. I'm assuming he had no insurance maybe he insured it under a student pilot. Larger airports won't allow you to keep an uninsured airplane there.

  2. I agree 100%... lots of “good ole boys” and Aviation has no place for that negligence - hopefully that is not the case. Prayers and RIP for the families.

  3. Propilot is absolutely correct in his comments. A Cirrus has no latitude for error.

  4. You Cirrus haters are hilarious. I have almost 1,000 hours in an SR22 and you guys have no idea what you are talking about. Cirrus aircraft have one of the lowest accident rates of ALL GA aircraft. Check the stats before you make uninformed statements.

    1. Read what Richard Collins had to say about the SR-20/SR-22 accident rate. It has a very poor accident rate.

    2. Actually the cirrus rate was horrendous initially, but has improved dramatically in the last decade. RIP Richard Collins.. as for this bonehead who killed his own son out of arrogance, my condolences to the family and friends. The cirrus aircraft was not the cause of this accident, he was. Just as a student driver hitting a tree is usually not the car’s fault.. unfortunately the sky is much more unforgiving.. what his poor family must be going thru is beyond words.

    3. The lure is the advertising...that it is safe no matter what...the chute will save you...In aviation trust nothing but your training...never compromise on that...RIP

    4. General Aviation is dangerous as hell anyone who goes up and thinks it's safe is fooling themselves. When you forget that when it bites you.

  5. The SR22 seems pretty popular with wealthy student pilots. Not saying that it can't be flown safely, but it moves at a greater clip than a C172. Things happen faster, and can go wrong quicker. That's nothing against the airplane, but we should acknowledge that greater speed and/or complexity can be hazardous to an inexperienced pilot, or one without recency in type.

    I'm a commercial pilot prepping for my ATP. It took me a long time before I was comfortable taking my kid up with me, and only then at a different airport where the fleet maintenance program was much more stringent than the company I worked for. It's headlines like these that make me so nervous about it. My heart goes out to the mother and family.

  6. Hmmmm...... I don't see any Cirrus haters here. The comments are far more in line that the aircraft have no latitude for error and they don't. I fly a Commander 112 that has a much fatter wing (much slower etc etc) and it is not as nearly sensitive to speed (especially in the pattern) as the Cirrus is. Just read the cases of people getting a bit slow. With almost 1,000 hours you are clearly piloting the aircraft within its safety parameters. Do you not agree that with the high performance critical wing it is less forgiving to getting a bit behind the speed curve ?

  7. re: cirrus haters comment. cirrus does have the lowest accident rate in GA provided a properly qualified pilot is behind the controls. a student pilot does not count. and that is per the factual stats.

  8. Cirrus does not have the lowest accident rate in GA.
    It has the lowest FATAL accident rate for piston single GA aircraft. And that is due to both the CAPS system parachute and Cirrus' commitment to training its pilot owners to use it.
    The comments that there's less room for error as a training aircraft, compared to say a 172, are correct. Cirrus pilots still screw up. If they are within the CAPS flight envelope, and they are smart enough to use it, they can likely avoid the consequences of their ineptitude.

  9. The Cirrus itself is not a bad aircraft. I only found 353 NTSB entries regarding Cirrus.

    Out of the 358 entries, only 158 involved fatalities of 1 or more.

    I agree, just like a gun, it's not the airplane itself.

    Prayers for the family...

  10. According to Aviation DB, records show he just got the plane in January 2018.
    So a lapsed student pilot license and medical. Who knows what, if any, flying he's done since 2013. Then buys himself a high performance, slippery plane. Probably couldn't get familiarization flight sign-offs from a CFI familiar with the type since he didn't have a license either.
    FlightAware shows a few recent flights since purchase. Couple to Ruidoso, NM where he was training horses and rest local flights around Midland Intl. If all holds up then student pilot with very low time in a high performance that he wasn't cleared/trained to fly. Very, very sad especially taking his son down with him.

  11. It's an attitude thing.

    Play by the rules and fly by the numbers and the probability of longevity and survival is quite good.

    Does not matter what you own.

  12. On the day of the accident the temperature in Midland was 106 degrees Fahrenheit with a field elevation at MAF of 2871ft MSL. A slick wing and normally aspirated engine aircraft flown by a very proficient pilot would have to be at the top of his game-- especially with an early right turn to depart the pattern to the west.

  13. ^^ Maybe in your country, but not in the United States. Sorry, no.

  14. I suspect Mr. Cooper was a slow learner.
    "Third-class medical certificate was issued in April 2013"

  15. Unfortunately for the flying community, there are any number of airplane owners who have no pilot cert, and fly, and a heck of a lot more who have neither a current medical/basic med cert, flight review or currency when required.

  16. How could FlightAware show any flights. It only shows aircraft on an IFR flight plan. Now maybe he had an IFR rated friend fly for him; maybe not. Should be looked into; well since he's deceased, who cares.

  17. If I get flight following during a flight, once I squawk the assigned transponder code, tracking is enabled via FlightAware. Doesn't matter if VFR or IFR

  18. After reading the last post, I went to FlightAware and learned a few things. VFR flights can be tracked with some stipulations. Learn something new every day.

  19. Any aircraft with ADS-B will automatically be tracked whether or not it's IFR, VFR, flight following or not. As soon as you're off the ground it'll show on FlightAware

    1. Not necessariy… if an ADS-B aircraft is using 978 UAT and squawking “anonymous” it may be tracked…but UN-Identified. But this man broke all the rules and killed the son that trusted him with the most valuable thing owned.

  20. Does anyone here realize that the Cirrus Aircraft does not meet the FAR23 flight characteristics for General Aviation Aircraft, specifically it does not recover from a spin situation in 3 turns or less, and in fact can be unrecoverable if one should happen to start? It was given approval for argument of 'equivalent' safety because a parachute system is installed, but does not have the flight characteristics required for which pilots train for recovery. In short, most people are not very well trained to pull a $500,000 aircraft replacement required handle where other aircraft are a trained recovery maneuver. This flight characteristic is something in my opinion should have made the Cirrus aircraft a type-certified pilot requirement aircraft and not a simple GA certification. And yes, the Cirrus has an very large incident rate compared to the GA fleet, hence they have specialized factory training programs now being made available where previously did not exist.

  21. After reading the last post it sounds to me that the Cirrus wasn't the best choice of aircraft for a student pilot. I've talked with another student pilot that's close to going for his PPL checkride and he told me that once he has his license he plans on buying a Cirrus SR-22. I told him that he should wait at least a year and go out and fly the Warrior and get some experience before getting into that slick Cirrus. He said he likes it because of the safety of the ballistic parachute.This guy is another one with money to burn. Hope it all works out for him.

    1. Remember JFK, Jr.? He bought a high performance airplane and look how that turned out for him and his innocent passengers.

  22. "Does anyone here realize that the Cirrus Aircraft does not meet the FAR23 flight characteristics for General Aviation Aircraft, specifically it does not recover from a spin situation in 3 turns or less"

    This is an false statement. There is absolutely NO regulations regarding spin recovery for non-aerobatic aircraft. Below is the link to the FAA FAR 23 regulation, section that specifically deals with spins:

  23. Whoever you are last poster...Seriously??
    It is amazing how people can't research the FAR's properly:

    § 23.221 Spinning.

    (a)Normal category airplanes. A single-engine, normal category airplane must be able to recover from a one-turn spin or a three-second spin, whichever takes longer, in not more than one additional turn after initiation of the first control action for recovery, or demonstrate compliance with the optional spin resistant requirements of this section.

    (1) The following apply to one turn or three second spins:

    (i) For both the flaps-retracted and flaps-extended conditions, the applicable airspeed limit and positive limit maneuvering load factor must not be exceeded;

    (ii) No control forces or characteristic encountered during the spin or recovery may adversely affect prompt recovery;

    (iii) It must be impossible to obtain unrecoverable spins with any use of the flight or engine power controls either at the entry into or during the spin; and

    (iv) For the flaps-extended condition, the flaps may be retracted during the recovery but not before rotation has ceased.

    (2) At the applicant's option, the airplane may be demonstrated to be spin resistant by the following:

    (i) During the stall maneuver contained in § 23.201, the pitch control must be pulled back and held against the stop. Then, using ailerons and rudders in the proper direction, it must be possible to maintain wings-level flight within 15 degrees of bank and to roll the airplane from a 30 degree bank in one direction to a 30 degree bank in the other direction;

    (ii) Reduce the airplane speed using pitch control at a rate of approximately one knot per second until the pitch control reaches the stop; then, with the pitch control pulled back and held against the stop, apply full rudder control in a manner to promote spin entry for a period of seven seconds or through a 360 degree heading change, whichever occurs first. If the 360 degree heading change is reached first, it must have taken no fewer than four seconds. This maneuver must be performed first with the ailerons in the neutral position, and then with the ailerons deflected opposite the direction of turn in the most adverse manner. Power and airplane configuration must be set in accordance with § 23.201(e) without change during the maneuver. At the end of seven seconds or a 360 degree heading change, the airplane must respond immediately and normally to primary flight controls applied to regain coordinated, unstalled flight without reversal of control effect and without exceeding the temporary control forces specified by § 23.143(c); and

    (iii) Compliance with §§ 23.201 and 23.203 must be demonstrated with the airplane in uncoordinated flight, corresponding to one ball width displacement on a slip-skid indicator, unless one ball width displacement cannot be obtained with full rudder, in which case the demonstration must be with full rudder applied.

  24. To clarify my post re. doing the correct research...this plane was a model year 2007. You have to look for the rules for that year.
    The rule quoted above is the rule that applied to the plane when it got its certificate. It had to comply with that rule in 2007... NOT the rule as revised in 2016.

    1. Sorry, but that rule was issued in the Federal Register in Feb 1996.
      Doc. No. 27807, 61 FR 5191, Feb. 9, 1996

    2. The plane was spin tested and it approved by EASA. The FAA recovery procedure is to pull the chute. If you can get into a spin with a cuffed wing design the red handle is your best bet. You dont have the skill or time to get out of one. I am a CFII and speak with over 2000 hours in Cirrus.

  25. Spin recovery is truly an academic exercise. Most stall spin accidents happen at pattern altitude typical base to final uncoordinated turn. Spin characteristics and recovery are not going to help you nor will a parachute. Pilot skills training and experience will keep you from getting into that situation in the first place. This was truly a suicide by airplane. An sr22 student pilot no liscense - don't need no regulations if I want to kill myself and my kid that's my business. There is no room in GA for this attitude. Thankfully didn't hurt others.

  26. There seems to be a lot of confusion over why Cirrus use CAPS on their aircraft. Some think that it is because the planes can not recover from a spin or are in some way unusual in their spin characteristics. That is not the case; the SR20/22 do not exhibit any unusual spin characteristics. In fact, the SR20 had performed over 60 spins for EASA during its certification phase. The document describing that process is searchable on the Web.

    Cirrus realized, quite correctly, that demonstrating spin resistance would not do anything to enhance safety or save lives. CAPS on the other hand, has saved lives. Some pilots have chosen not to deploy the chute and some have lost their lives because of that decision. It is up to the pilot in command in an emergency to make the decision but Cirrus produces very safe and efficient airplanes. There is a reason why they are so popular. There has never been an airplane built that can save itself from a bad pilot.

  27. Maybe this is fake, but appears to indicate this aircraft not certified for spins and needs 1000 all for a chute save.

    Sad that father’s need to be macho over being skilled killed both him and the innocent son. The emotional, needy brain is no substitute for a thinking, conservative, risk-adverse mind. God is my co-pilot does not replace, training, good judgment, aerodynamics, and physics. May the family find peace and may others learn from this.

  28. I started flying in 1968 and remember a little aviation book I bought. There was a quote from someone: "There are old pilots and there are bold pilots". "But there are no old bold pilots"! I always try to remember that! It makes me so sad to see accidents like this. May they rest in peace! My heart goes out to the family. The Cirrus Is an ultra slick airplane! But any airplane can kill you if you do not respect its limitations and most importantly, your own!

    Commercial pilot 2,000hrs.+

    1. 2,500+ hours ... yeah, I read that statement too. Then I remembered Bob Hoover and Chuck Yeager and revised it to state that "there are some old bold pilots".

  29. I know many Old Bold Pilots, but they were experienced pilots and above average intelligence.

  30. This is a clear case of JFK Jr syndrome which says “if I can afford to buy it then I MUST be able to fly it.” Except this guy had it even worse.

  31. Excellent detective work by the commenter above this one which states: "This is a clear case of JFK Jr syndrome which says “if I can afford to buy it then I MUST be able to fly it.”"

    JFK Jr. only had 310 hours and was a licensed pilot according to the NTSB. For the love of god, why didn't he bring an infallible instructor with 250 hours into those 6-11 mile visibility conditions reported at Martha's Vineyard?!

  32. To clear JFK's name the instructor spun (no pun intended) the story around and admitted to lying a while back. JFK begged him to come along as his wife and her sister were getting late and he was watching the weather channel getting concerned, and there was evident pressure to get there. Plus his leg was hurting him.
    The 250 hrs CFI ignored him and told him it was going to be OK, as he feared recommending someone else might make him lose a valuable source of revenue and the prestige of training JFK.
    The dead cannot speak for themselves and those who screwed up can blame them.

  33. Whether any of the above is true or not -

    JFK Jr was PIlot in Command.

    JFK Jr made the decision to fly into conditions he was unprepared to negotiate successfully.

    It could have turned out differently with alternative choices.

  34. "To clear JFK's name the instructor spun (no pun intended) the story around and admitted to lying a while back."


  35. There's a tendency that stands out with fatal Cirrus accidents. Thanks to its chute, the craft is capable of saving its occupants, but only in the case of those occupants/pilots being aware enough that they are getting past their abilities. I cannot blame the aircraft that they are attractive from a style, performance, and safety standpoint and that they attract people who have more money than true aviation awareness. I think they are incredible machines and I'd love to own one, but would fly it in a controlled, risk-managed manner. To assume that by being able to buy it, I would automatically be able to take it wherever and whenever the thought occurs to me would lead me to these sad pages.

    Cirrus seems quite committed to safety and does everything it can to promote safe aviation. It cannot put a competent pilot into the left seat, however. That falls to us.

  36. I read several comments regarding this Cirrus crash and NTSB report. This crash evolved from a non experienced and non trained Cirrus student-pilot. I am a student-pilot and a former active duty service member from both the Marines and Air Force (retired 22 years) Aircraft Armament Specialist and Armament Craftsman on the FA18 and F-16 fighter aircraft. I have seen active duty enlistment men and women get selected to pilot training with only have a PPL, then go to flying T-6, T-38 and then finally the F-16s. But having said that all of the individuals that I know that fly the F16 now, have been through hours of ground and flight safety before getting behind the stick. It is my opinion that with the proper aircraft training, a person can operate and fly a Cirrus aircraft. My prayers go out the family for their loss. As a student-pilot, I know understand the FAA rules and policies regarding my oath that i have for myself and to think safety first. Do not violate the rules...follow all directives and rules that are coming from the FAA. I am not an FAA investigator, but these are just my thoughts, we all learn what not to do. Please continue to support the positives of aviation, it has come a long way. We all love it and enjoy it. Be safe everyone.... Semper Fi.

  37. Most GA crash is on the pilot I'm sure this is not going to be any different from what we already know I'm about 99% sure that is what the NTSB report will say. The type of aircraft is irreverent in most cases even in engine failure.

  38. The spin requirement for certification only applies if they certify the aircraft for spins. The SR22 is not spin certified and does meet the far23 requirements.

  39. It's tough when a child has a father who flaunts the rule of law and physics and demands that the child follow him unto death. While the father could flaunt the FAA rules on flight training and proficiency, medical, and and a pilot's license, his behavior could not trump the physical laws of the universe. Those laws mandate respect. Lack of knowledge and lack of respect leads to departure stalls and death. In this case, the arrogance of the father took an innocent life, his own child's life. That taking was really a form of manslaughter, not any different than driving a car while drunk, distracted, or without a license. Who tolerates that kind of behavior even if it is one of "the good old boys"? This event is truly sad, inexcusable, and criminal.

    Possibly the FAA needs to have student pilots sign an oath that they will not take passengers on their death trips. The student should be required to carry the oath with them anytime they are in an aircraft as a pilot. It would just serve as a reminder that they are subject to all of the laws all of the time. I would not be surprised to learn that this guy was flying around and endangering others in the airspace for years. There was no fault with the aircraft, just the fool who pretended to be a pilot. The community really needs to come down hard on this behavior. I think others probably knew this guy was an illegal pilot and turned a blind eye. Either that or he was lying to others about his qualifications. Who gave him the little instruction he received? Did the CFI know this guy was flying? Was the aircraft insured? TSA has all of those placards, "See something, say something." That needs to apply to situations like this. Maybe more kids can finish school.

    1. Better yet- a FAA regulation requiring any aircraft used for instruction to display a placard that says: "Illegal for a solo student pilot to have passengers onboard. $10,000 fine. No exceptions."

  40. So sad. The family has to be hurting as the one year “since” is coming up. The FAA db indicates the aircraft was first registered to Mr Cooper’s company in early 2018. He had been flying it illegally for less than six months. I agree that someone knew he was not licensed nor trained to fly his aircraft. It is a scary thought to know that I may be in the same airspace with non pilots who blow off all the rules but can afford to purchase a cool airplane so they can play “pilot”.

    1. His wife didn't even know he wasn't a licensed pilot. Read her comments in the investigation docket.

  41. What is the possibility that this student pilot had allowed his son to perform the takeoff? It would be my guess that that may have been the case, and since he had never finished his pilot qualification, he apparently wasn't too worried about following rules and proper training. Would he have shown his son how to do it a couple times and then let the son do it? Was there a safety brief prior to takeoff? "If the engine fails we will -------." "If I say let me have it, you instantly let me have it" We don't know, but if such an important rule was broken as taking a passenger under only a student license, and an expired one at that, what other stupid things did he do? I have noted that there is not much enforcement or checking to see if a person is current. ATC NEVER ASK if you are current. You don't have to be current to buy an aircraft or to have it serviced at an FBO. You don't have to have insurance to fly an aircraft that you own. Who would know until your accident is being investigated?

  42. Wouldn't you think the dead child's mother would know if her husband was legal? That or he lied to her.

    1. His wife didn't even know he wasn't a licensed pilot. Read her comments in the investigation docket.

    2. Do you buy that argument?

      They were married for a long time BEFORE the husband started his first flying lesson. This isn't the case where she married him for 5 years and the husband claims that he got his FAA certificate 20 years ago.

    3. I am certain he didn’t tell her he hadn’t passed the tests because her 16 yr old was on the plane… he had a large enough ego that he flew at least 90 hours illegally with no license and no medical. I am sure there is a lot he didn’t share with her…

    4. I don't buy that argument.

      Precisely because she got a 16 year old son with a driver learner's permit --- she would know that her 16 year old son couldn't have passengers in the car.

      So either the husband outright lied to the wife and claimed that he passed the private checkride (and they all went out to restaurant to celebrate). Or that the wife was willfully blind to the fact that the husband was on a learner's permit and couldn't carry passenger (which the husband regularly flew the whole family of 4).

    5. I don't think she knew anything just assumed he had it. Most wives unless they are into aviation have no interest in understanding the process. She knew he was going to flight school all she knew.

  43. ^^ Maybe in your country, but not in the United States. Sorry, no.

    in some cases it should be, too many people dying in these "accidents" many caused by basic ineptitude...

    1. While I agree, my comment is in regard to how things are now.

  44. An "honest man" doesn't knowingly commit a Federal felony, especially one that endangers the life of their own child. Like the rules or not, they are usually written in blood.

  45. Most likely a staunch anti-government type who considers all regulations as "commie" conspiracy.

    He was decently well off to buy a Cirrus with a nice glass cockpit, he had a valid medical for a few years and took flight training... but I guess why bother with a checkride and being legal? Just giving in to a commie government's silly requirements I guess. Stick it up to the left in Washington.

    I am all for "Personal Freedom" but the buck stops where one person's "Freedom" infringes on and is at the cost of other people's FREEDOM. Especially the freedom to LIVE.

    He killed his child and thankfully didn't kill anyone else in a risky high density altitude takeoff.

    This is the definition of criminal behavior... The criminal selfishly grabs for himself, be it money (bank robbery), an object of desire (rape) or a life, at the detriment of someone else or of society in general.

    The IRS and local municipal ordinances or your friendly Home Owner Ass-ociation may have silly stupid idiotic rules, but I personally believe the FARs regarding aviation make sense and are written to SAVE YOUR DAMN LIFE.

  46. Mr. 1000 hour Cirrus pilot,

    Why don't you supply a link or the stats you talk about so you can enlighten all of us. And the last page of your logbook that shows 1000+ hours of SR22 time.

  47. Under 14 CFR § 61.3 - Requirement for certificates, ratings, and
    Subpart A - General
    (a) Required pilot certificate for operating a civil aircraft of the United States. ... (i) A pilot certificate issued under this part and in accordance with § 61.19; ... their photo identification as described in paragraph (a)(2) of this section for inspection upon a request from: ...

    (3) Any Federal, State, or local law enforcement officer; or. Inspection of certificate. Each person who holds an airman certificate, temporary document in accordance with paragraph (a)(1)(v) or (vi) of this section, medical certificate, documents establishing alternative medical qualification under part 68 of this chapter, authorization, or license required by this part must present it and their photo identification as described in paragraph (a)(2) of this section for inspection upon a request from:

    (1) The Administrator;
    (2) An authorized representative of the National Transportation Safety Board;
    (3) Any Federal, State, or local law enforcement officer; or
    (4) An authorized representative of the Transportation Security Administration.
    also U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Office of Air and Marine’s (OAM) law enforcement within the general aviation (GA) community to conduct pilot certificate inspections, ensuring that general aviation pilots receive information from the agents and officers most skilled to conduct pilot certificate inspections.

  48. I am not a pilot just an aviation enthusiast.
    I know the arguments. Planes like guns do not inherently kill people. Bad decision-making and/or lack of skills for the flight environment leads to bad consequences. Mr. Cooper suffered from both. It is unthinkable that his son's death was avoidable.

    1. But, according to their obituaries, they were both God loving individuals who were active in their church. How does that square with being so arrogant that he took his son's life and deprived his wife and daughter of their husband and father?

  49. To the person who jumped to this conclusion: "Most likely a staunch anti-government type who considers all regulations as "commie" conspiracy"

    You sir, are an idiot and I hope you aren't a pilot. It's people like you who think they know everything that make my nervous in the skies.

  50. All the spin recovery arguments go out the window when you stall and enter a spin at 200 ft.

  51. People flying planes without a license is a problem which is very difficult to solve. Especially when the offender has his own plane and airstrip.

    1. It's not that difficult to solve. For example, we could hire more FAA inspectors and have them perform more frequent ramp checks. Many pilots go their entire lives never experiencing a ramp check, so that doesn't exactly encourage compliance. The FAA could set up an anonymous tip line and encourage pilots to report illegal pilots. If you want to get more extreme, FBOs could be required to inspect pilot certificates and medicals when pilots arrive and depart. Even the pilot with his own airstrip has to get Avgas somewhere. There are easy ways to solve the problem, we just lack the "appetite" as it costs money and also could be seen as an impingement on freedom.

    2. The FAA doesn't even have the staff to ramp check KMAF which has a 9500 foot runway and a 8300 foot runway. What are the chances that you get ramp checks at your local GA airport?

      They probably would need to hire 10x more staff in order to check your GA airport.

  52. So this student pilot never got his license, and never bothered to renew his Class III medical certificate. After a five and a half year 'hiatus' he starts flying again around 2017 or 2018, amasses around 190 hours (half of it illegally in the SR22) but he STILL didn't take the flight exam and get his PPL. This leads me to believe that he may have had some problems with basic flying skills, sometimes referred to as a slow learner or just plain a 'bad stick'. That is, he just never could get the feel for flying an aircraft such that his CFI felt that he was ready to take and pass the practical flight exam with a flight examiner.

    I have known a few like that. When I got my PPL, I flew regularly two to three times a week for six months, and passed the flight exam first try with a total of about 65 hours logged. My instructor said that I had a good feel for the aircraft and a good feel for and understanding of its limitations. I am not bragging, the majority of student pilots become reasonably good sticks within 50-80 hours of combined dual and solo time.

    At the same time, there was another student at that flight school, a man in his late 50's, who had about 140 hours of dual time and was still not proficient enough for his CFI to feel confident in signing him off to take the flight exam. I don't think he ever did get his license. I think we all have known at least one person who fit that description. This is just speculation, but I am thinking this gentleman also fell into that category.

    So then to compound the issue, he goes and buys a slick, fast, complex aircraft. Instead of getting his license in a 172, and then maybe buying a 172 or a 182, or perhaps an Archer, he goes out and buys the modern day equivalent of the Doctor Killer (formerly the V-35 Bonanza). Basically too fast and too complex for his level of experience, skill, and proficiency. It would have been very easy for him to be behind the airplane pretty much all the time. Since he was flying it illegally, I am wondering if he ever had ANY dual-time instruction in the aircraft.

    As long as nothing goes wrong, probably nothing bad happens. And so perhaps he develops an overestimation of his skill and proficiency level, and gradually gets lulled into a false sense of security in this aircraft. Then one fine day, he takes off fully loaded on a very high density altitude day, and begins climbing out without realizing the aircraft is close to a stall. He neither senses or feels or expects the impending stall until the aircraft quite suddenly departs controlled flight, with nowhere near enough altitude to recover.

    In my opinion, this student pilot flying this aircraft was simply an accident looking for a place to happen. It was not the fault of the aircraft. It was hubris and complacency on the part of a pilot who did not understand how poorly equipped he was in terms of training, skill, and proficiency.

    1. Probably right maybe it was medical although he could have gone basic medical if he didn't have any issues.

    2. A bit late to comment on this one, but I received my PPL when I had 42 hours TT. I used to fly anytime I could "borrow" an airplane from a local religious cult in Dalton, Georgia, in 1971 (the Church of God of the Union Assembly). I washed their 17 airplanes and was given permission to use any airplane I wanted. My instructor was a hack by the name of JBall. After 5 hours with him, I never saw him, except in passing. I allowed him to fly with me to sign me off for the check-ride with Floyd Price (a legend. The airport was later named in his honor.).
      When Floyd pulled the power off in N8014F (a C150), about 500 feet above runway 14, and told me to land on that runway, I slipped the airplane down to about 20' AGL, and landed.
      JBall announced to the usual gaggle of observers that i had just blown the check-ride. and smugly told the assembled that he never taught me that garbage.
      Floyd signed off on my PPL and I became a sometimes legitimate corporate and later, airline pilot, with Piedmont and USAir.
      It takes all kinds is my point.