Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Airtime Aircraft Cygnet, operated by the pilot/owner, N186AT: Fatal accident occurred August 27, 2018 in Pensacola, Florida

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

Additional Participating Entities: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Birmingham, Alabama 
Airtime Aircraft; Navarre, Florida 

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


Location: Pensacola, FL
Accident Number: ERA18FA235
Date & Time: 08/27/2018, 1215 CDT
Registration: N186AT
Injuries: 1 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 

On August 27, 2018, about 1215 central daylight time, an amphibious Airtime Aircraft Inc. Cygnet, N186AT, operated by the pilot/owner, collided with the water near Pensacola, Florida. The student pilot was fatally injured. The weight-shift control aircraft was substantially damaged. The solo-instructional flight was conducted under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local flight that departed the southern coast of Santa Rosa Sound, near Pensacola Beach, about 1200.

The flight instructor witnessed the accident and reported that he was giving the pilot instruction in preparation for his first solo flight. During their dual instruction, they performed about 25 touch-and-go landings in the water of Santa Rosa Sound, an inland waterway north of Pensacola Beach. According to the instructor, the pilot was flying "perfectly" and was ready for his first solo flight. They landed near the shore, and he got out of the aircraft and reviewed some final items with the pilot before he took off; his flight was to consist of several left rectangular patterns and subsequent water landings and takeoffs. The instructor watched as the pilot departed westbound, perpendicular to the shore, and stated the takeoff and climb appeared normal. The engine power settings appeared normal, but as the aircraft reached about 400 ft, he noticed the left wing drop about 35 degrees followed by a quick right wing drop to about 60 degrees before tuning back left and "spiraling steeply down." As the aircraft approached the water, it started to level off immediately before impact.

Another witness, who watched the instructional flight from his boat, stated the aircraft made repeated ovals over the water. A short time later, he anchored his boat close to shore, got out and was walking along the shoreline when he noticed the same aircraft was flying perpendicular to the shore several hundred feet up. He stated it appeared to be flying straight and level when he saw the left and right-wings drop, followed by a left turn and descent straight down; it made 3 revolutions, then briefly looked like it was leveling off before impacting the water.

Examination of the wreckage revealed that the left-wing strut and left leading edge tube was fractured and bent in several locations, the fuselage was deformed and the left float was split open. The engine remained attached to the fuselage and all three propeller blades were broken off near the propeller hub. All structural components and control cables were accounted for during the examination. The haul back cable remained attached and all tension wires and control wires were mounted in their respective locations. The control bar remained intact and connected to the keel post.

The aircraft was recovered from the accident site and retained for additional examination.

According to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) records, the pilot, a 53-year-old male, held a student pilot certificate and a valid drivers license. No pilot logbooks were recovered.

According to FAA records, the airplane was issued a special airworthiness certificate in the light sport category on June 1, 2016. It was a two-place, weight-shift control aircraft equipped with a Rotax 912-ULS, 100 horsepower engine driving a three-bladed propeller in a pusher configuration. It had two floats for water operations and retractable tricycle landing gear for land operations. The tachometer time indicated the aircraft had accumulated 174.4 total hours of operation. No airplane logbooks were recovered.

The weather conditions reported at Pensacola Naval Air Station/Forrest Sherman Field (NPA) Pensacola, Florida, 10-miles west of the of the accident site, at 1219, included wind from 140° at 8 knots, visibility 10 statute miles, scattered clouds at 3,200 ft and 4,800 ft, broken clouds at 25,000 ft, temperature 32° C, dew point 22° C, and an altimeter setting of 30.11 inches of mercury. 

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: AIRTIME
Registration: N186AT
Model/Series: CYGNET
Aircraft Category: Weight-Shift
Amateur Built: No
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: NPA
Observation Time: 1219 CDT
Distance from Accident Site: 10 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 32°C / 22°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 3200 ft agl
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 8 knots / , 140°
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 25000 ft agl
Visibility: 10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.11 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Pensacola, FL (NONE)
Destination: Pensacola, FL (NONE)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude:  30.363056, -87.058611 (est)

Those who may have information that might be relevant to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation may contact them by email eyewitnessreport@ntsb.gov, and any friends and family who want to contact investigators about the accident should email assistance@ntsb.gov.

A man died Monday after his ultralight craft crashed into Santa Rosa Sound east of Portofino at 11:59 a.m.

Witnesses saw the crash and a good samaritan dived into the water to release the pilot from his harness. The man was performing his first solo flight after taking ultralight flight instruction.

The man is identified as a 54-year old Mississippi man, and additional information is withheld pending notification of next of kin.

Midway Fire Department and Pensacola Fire Departments responded to the scene.

A man was killed Monday when his ultralight aircraft crashed in the Santa Rosa Sound.

Midway Fire District Chief Jonathan Kanzigg said his department responded to a call for a plane down in Santa Rosa Sound on Monday morning. First responders staged operations from the Oriole Beach Boat Ramp at 3165 Linden Ave., in Gulf Breeze.

Kanzigg said by the time the department responded, some Good Samaritans had retrieved the pilot’s body, and the man was then transferred to the fire district boat.

The deceased's identity was not available as of Monday evening. Kanzigg described the individual as a male who appeared to be in his late 50s. No one else on the ground or in the water was injured, Kanzigg said.

Numerous state and local agencies responded to the incident, including the Midway Fire District, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Santa Rosa County Sheriff's Office and the Escambia County Sheriff's Office.

The National Transportation Safety Board will take the lead in investigating the circumstances of the crash.

Original article can be found here ➤ https://www.pnj.com

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