Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Cirrus SR22, N579CP: Accident occurred November 21, 2018 in Sand Creek Township, Dunn County, Wisconsin

Additional Participating Entity: 
Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office;  Minneapolis, Minnesota

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: 

Location: Sand Creek, WI
Accident Number: GAA19CA074
Date & Time: 11/21/2018, 1045 CST
Registration: N579CP
Aircraft: Cirrus SR22
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Miscellaneous/other
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Ferry 

The pilot reported that, during a ferry flight, while in the climb to cruise altitude, the engine temperatures increased quickly, the engine surged and then lost power. He then deployed the Cirrus airframe parachute system (CAPS).

The pilot's lawyer further reported that, after the engine surged, the pilot executed a "rapid" descent to get the engine "breathing better". The engine then lost power and the pilot pulled the CAPS.

During the off-airport landing, in a field, the airplane impacted an irrigation sprinkler system.

The airplane sustained substantial damage to the fuselage.

During a postaccident examination of the airplane by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector and airplane manufacturer, it was revealed that, the air reference line for the fuel injectors was found disconnected on the right-side bank at cylinder #1 and disconnected at the aft baffling.

The FAA inspector further reported that, the airplane had flown 7 hours since maintenance, where 3 cylinders had been repaired/replaced. He added that, this was the first time the mechanic had worked on the airplane for the owner. The airplane was to be flown at 10,000 ft or less for the 1st 10 hours after the maintenance. The pilot reported that the power loss occurred 12 minutes into the flight while passing through 10,000 ft to 15,000 ft. The pilot stated that he applied the boost pump, adjusted the mixer lever, and finally pulled the CAPS chute at 3,500 ft MSL. The pilot added, that he had done a flight 2-3 weeks prior.

Pilot Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 49, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Single-engine; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 2 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 08/29/2018
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 04/04/2018
Flight Time: (Estimated) 4200 hours (Total, all aircraft), 3500 hours (Total, this make and model), 4000 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 110 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 30 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cirrus
Registration: N579CP
Model/Series: SR22 Undesignated
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2008
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 3291
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 11/14/2018, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3400 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 1425 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: TCM
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: IO-550-N-51B
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 310 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: KRPD, 1105 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 13 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1635 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 345°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Scattered / 9500 ft agl
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 8 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: None / None
Wind Direction: 50°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: N/A / N/A
Altimeter Setting: 30.37 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: -7°C / -12°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Cumberland, WI (UBE)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: IFR
Destination: Akron, OH (CAK)
Type of Clearance: IFR
Departure Time: 1030 CST
Type of Airspace: Class G 

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: 45.204722, -91.691667 (est)

None were injured when a plane crashed Wednesday in the town of Sand Creek, according to Dunn County authorities.

A report at 11:05 a.m. stated that a Cirrus plane had gone down in a harvested cornfield southeast of 1450th Avenue and County Road I, according to a press release from Dunn County Sheriff Dennis Smith.

Shortly after, the pilot reportedly arrived, uninjured, at the Sand Creek Fire Department, Smith said.

The pilot, of Duluth, Minn., who law enforcement did not identify, was the only passenger in the plane at the time. He had been flying from Cumberland, Wis., to Akron, Ohio, when the plane experienced mechanical problems. An airframe parachute -- a safety measure meant to control the descent of a plane and protect its passengers, according to Cirrus Aircraft -- was deployed. 

The plane went down and struck an irrigator, Smith said.

Dunn County deputies, the Sand Creek Fire Department, the Colfax Ambulance and a Federal Aviation Administration investigator responded to the scene.

The FAA investigator investigated the accident, Smith said.

Dunn County Sheriff's Office


DATE OF RELEASE:​ November 21, 2018

INCIDENT #:​18-12043

SUBJECT:​ Airplane Crash



On Wednesday, November 21, 2018 at 11:05 AM the Dunn County E-911 Center received a report of a Cirrus aircraft that had gone in the Township of Sand Creek.

Dunn County Deputies, Sand Creek Fire and Colfax Ambulance were dispatched to the area.

A short time later the pilot was reported to have arrived at the Sand Creek Fire Department. 

The pilot was the only occupant of the aircraft and was not injured.

The aircraft was located in a harvested cornfield southeast of 1450th Ave and Cty Rd I. 

The airplane struck an irrigator.

The pilot was from Duluth, Minnesota. He was flying from Cumberland, Wisconsin to Akron, Ohio when the aircraft experienced mechanical issues. An airframe parachute was deployed and the aircraft went down in the field.

An investigator from the Federal Aviation Administration was responding to the scene to further investigate the incident.

Sheriff Dennis Smith

Dunn County (WQOW) – A pilot is thankfully OK after crashing an airplane in the Township of Sand Creek Wednesday morning.

According to the Dunn County Sheriff’s Office, they received a report of a Cirrus aircraft that had gone down.

A short time later, the pilot showed up at the Sand Creek Fire Department. The pilot was the only person in the plane and was not hurt.

The plane was found in a harvested cornfield near Highway I, just north of Myron Park. The plane hit an irrigator.

The pilot from Duluth, was flying from Cumberland to Akron Ohio when the plane had mechanical issues. An airframe parachute was deployed and the plane went down in the field.

The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating the crash.

Original article can be found here ➤


  1. I dunno. I realize there is a need--occasionally--for the chute, but those two wings there, along with your skills at handling the aircraft during forced landings, should not go to waste because of that last ditch alternative.

  2. Davey - Your point is that you shouldn't 'waste' your skills and should instead try to execute a forced landing?

    When used within design parameters, the chute has an incredible record. It has saved 165 lives.

    Your comment is offensive and ignorant. The pilot flying this aircraft was a former factory pilot who shares time between training pilots on how to fly this type and ferrying Cirrus aircraft. He is one of the most qualified instructors out there. His options were to try and land a low wing, high performance aircraft into a random corn field in the middle of nowhere or pull the chute. If your life was on the line, I'd imagine you'd do the same.

    Read through reports on this site - compare the outcomes of forced landings.

    This pilot went home to see his family thanks to the chute. That outcome would be a lot less likely had he decided to not 'waste his skills' and attempt a ditch.

    For some reason, pilots were cynical about CAPS and used it as some excuse to sound macho and ridicule those who invested in it or exercised it as an option. Thankfully people are starting to realize that the logic is ridiculous and that this is saving lives.

    I hope you aren't a CFI. Please don't tell other pilots to ignore technology or tools that will save their lives and potentially other lives on the ground.

  3. No emer training required - just pull here. See, that easy.

  4. This is like when people with too much money say, "Hold my beer".

  5. Any landing you can walk away from was a good landing!