Monday, July 02, 2018

Flight Control System Malfunction / Failure: Cessna 337F Super Skymaster, N107BL; accident occurred June 30, 2018 at Vinland Valley Aerodrome (K64) Baldwin City, Douglas County, Kansas

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Wichita, Kansas

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board:

Location: Baldwin City, KS
Accident Number: CEN18LA246
Date & Time: 06/30/2018, 1155 CDT
Registration: N107BL
Aircraft: Cessna 337
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Flight control sys malf/fail
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

On June 30, 2018, about 1155 central daylight time, a Cessna 337F, N107BL, a multiengine centerline thrust airplane, was substantially damaged when it struck trees and a fence during a forced landing about one mile southeast of Vinland Valley Aerodrome (K64), Baldwin City, Kansas. The commercial pilot was not injured. The airplane was registered to and operated by Vinland Aerodrome, Baldwin City, Kansas, under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident, and no flight plan had been filed for the local personal flight.

According to the pilot, who is also an airframe and powerplant (A&P) mechanic, he took off and climbed to 3,500 ft to practice single-engine operations. He shut down the rear engine and feathered the propeller. After doing some air work, the pilot attempted to unfeather the propeller and restart the rear engine but was unsuccessful. He returned to the airport and made a single-engine landing approach.

During the approach, the pilot noticed [he had lost his] full flap down setting and determined a full stop landing on the grass runway was going to be close. He reduced flaps to 10°. The flap setting "relaxed" and the pilot determined there was insufficient altitude available to retract the landing gear. The pilot maneuvered to avoid houses and made a forced landing in a crosswind. Full power and full flaps were used until touchdown. The airplane struck small trees, shrubs, and a fence. The left wing was bent and the fuselage was buckled.

The rear engine propeller has a remote hydraulic accumulator that assists in unfeathering the propeller and is serviced to 120 psi. During annual inspection 4 hours prior to the accident flight, it was found to be slightly low. Post-accident examination revealed the pressure to be 85 psi. It is most likely a nitrogen leakage had developed during those 4 hours. The leakage should have been detected during the pre-takeoff check. The flap switch not holding position was most likely due to a loss of tension in the flap switch pivot, allowing the switch to move with aircraft vibration. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 67, 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): Airplane Single-engine
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 06/04/2018
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 12/08/2017
Flight Time:  8691 hours (Total, all aircraft), 47 hours (Total, this make and model), 8627 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 40 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 22 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N107BL
Model/Series: 337 F
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1970
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 33701330
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 6
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 06/22/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 4630 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 4 Hours
Engines: 2 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 2918 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Continental
ELT:  Installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: IO-360-C
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 210 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: LWC, 833 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 11 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1152 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 360°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility: 10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: None
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 8 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual:
Wind Direction: 200°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual:
Altimeter Setting: 29.87 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 34°C / 23°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: Baldwin City, KS (K64)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Baldwin City, KS (K64)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1140 CDT
Type of Airspace: Class E; Class G 

Airport Information

Airport: Vinland Valley Aerodrome (K64)
Runway Surface Type: Grass/turf
Airport Elevation: 884 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Dry
Runway Used: 16
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 3030 ft / 80 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing 

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:  38.836111, -95.181944 (est)

DOUGLAS COUNTY — A Kansas man avoided injury in an emergency landing just before noon Saturday in Douglas County.

Approximate location of Saturday’s emergency landing

The Kansas Highway Patrol reported a plane piloted by David A. McFarlane, 67, Baldwin, was attempting to practice fail engine maneuvers.

He attempted to restart the engine and the engine failed to start. 

He tried to turn around and land at the airport, lost altitude and tried to land in a bean field.

The plane landed in a private residence, struck a wood fence and came to a rest in a field next to the residence.

McFarlane was not injured.

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