Saturday, June 9, 2018

Piper PA-24-250 Comanche, N244TW: Accident occurred May 20, 2018 at San Jose International Airport (KSJC), Santa Clara County, California

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Aviation Accident Preliminary Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: San Jose, CA
Accident Number: WPR18LA153
Date & Time: 05/20/2018, 1950 PDT
Registration: N244TW
Aircraft: PIPER PA24
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On May 20, 2018, about 1950 Pacific daylight time, a Piper PA24-250, N244TW, sustained substantial damage shortly after landing at Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport (SJC) San Jose, California. The pilot was not injured. The personal flight was conducted under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 and visual flight rules (VFR). Visual meteorological conditions prevailed.

According to the pilot, he had rented the airplane from Plus One Flyers, located at McClellan-Palomar Airport (CRQ), Carlsbad, California. Early on the day of the accident, the pilot flew the airplane from CRQ to French Valley Airport (F70) Murrieta/Temecula, California, and landed uneventfully. He departed F70 about 1730 that afternoon, destined for SJC. Near the "Pruneyard" VFR reporting point, he contacted the SJC air traffic control tower (ATCT), and was instructed to cross midfield at 2,000 ft. After he crossed over the airport, he entered a right downwind leg for runway 30R. Once he was stabilized on the downwind leg, he reduced the engine power, extended the landing gear, and verified that the landing gear position indicator light was illuminated green, which denoted that the landing gear was down and locked into position. He began a descent and turned onto base leg, and then again verified that the landing gear was down and locked. He confirmed with SJC ATCT that he was cleared to land, and turned final for runway 30R. The approach and touchdown were normal and uneventful, and the pilot then began to brake the airplane. Approximately at the intersection of runway 30R and taxiway Echo, when the airplane was traveling about 30 mph, the landing gear "suddenly collapsed." The airplane slid on its belly, and came to a stop approximately 150 ft beyond taxiway Echo. After the ATCT controllers determined that the airplane was immobilized, and verified that the pilot was uninjured, the controllers dispatched airport safety personnel to assist. The airplane was lifted and towed to a secure location on the airport. Subsequent cursory examination by Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspectors determined that the abnormal runway contact resulted in substantial damage to the airplane fuselage structure. The airplane was retained by the NTSB for detailed examination.

According to FAA records, the airplane was manufactured in 1958, and was equipped with a Lycoming O-540 series piston engine. The airplane was purchased by its current owners in 2013, and was on leaseback to Plus One Flyers for rental purposes.

The pilot held a private pilot certificate with a single-engine land rating. He reported a total flight experience of about 250 hours, including about 87 hours in complex airplanes, and about 9 hours in the accident airplane make and model. His most recent FAA third-class medical certificate was issued in November 2015.

The 1953 SJC automated weather observation included winds from 240° at 8 knots, visibility 10 miles, few clouds at 2,000 ft, scattered clouds at 3,200 ft, a broken cloud layer at 6,000 ft, temperature 14° C, dew point 8° C, and an altimeter setting of 29.95 inches of mercury. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Manufacturer: PIPER
Registration: N244TW
Model/Series: PA24 250
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Plus One Flyers
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Night/Dark
Observation Facility, Elevation: SJC, 62 ft msl
Observation Time: 1953 PDT
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 14°C / 8°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 2000 ft agl
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 8 knots, 240°
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 6000 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 29.95 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed:
Departure Point: Murrieta, CA (F70)
Destination: San Jose, CA (KSJC)

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: 

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