Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Globe GC-1B Swift, N78067: Incident occurred November 11, 2018 in Watertown, Wilson County, Tennessee -and- Accident occurred December 11, 2015 near Lake Elmo Airport (21D), St. Paul, Ramsey County, Minnesota

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Nashville, Tennessee

November 11, 2018: Landed hard in a field.

https://registry.faa.gov/N78067

Date: 11-NOV-18
Time: 20:00:00Z
Regis#: N78067
Aircraft Make: GLOBE
Aircraft Model: GC 1B
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: UNKNOWN
Flight Phase: LANDING (LDG)
Operation: 91
City: WATERTOWN
State: TENNESSEE

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

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

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

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

Aviation Accident Data Summary - National Transportation Safety Board:   https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

Location: Lake Elmo, MN
Accident Number: CEN16LA061
Date & Time: 12/11/2015, 1400 CST
Registration: N78067
Aircraft: GLOBE GC 1B
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (partial)
Injuries: 2 Minor
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal

Analysis 

The private pilot reported that, before departure, he performed an engine run-up with carburetor heat applied, and no anomalies were noted. The pilot departed for the personal local flight, and when the airplane reached about 100 ft above ground level, the engine power decreased from 2,400 to 1,600 rpm, so he executed a forced landing to a field.

A postaccident examination of the airplane and engine revealed that the throttle body separated from the air intake manifold due to overload likely associated with impact. The fuel nozzle and primary venturi were missing from the carburetor and were not located. Although the engine could likely have started without these components installed, it is unlikely that it could have produced much more than idle power. Sliding marks on the sides of the throttle body revealed evidence of contact with the legs of the primary venturi. The contact marks had areas free of black deposits whereas areas adjacent to the marks were covered with deposits, indicating that a primary venturi had been installed until recently. The deposits on either side of the marks were not disturbed, indicating that the primary venturi did not rotate out of position; therefore, the primary venturi either fractured in service or was separated and lost from the throttle body after the carburetor was disassembled during the initial postaccident examination.

The Federal Aviation Administration had previously issued an airworthiness directive (AD), which required that the accident make and model carburetor be inspected at each annual, 100-hour, or progressive inspection to determine if the primary venturi was loose or missing. According to the maintenance logbooks, the last inspection conducted in accordance with the AD occurred about 1.5 months and 1 flight hour before the accident.

Although the weather conditions at the time of the accident were conducive to the formation of carburetor icing at cruise power, it is not likely that carburetor ice caused the venturi or fuel nozzle to break because the pilot had used carburetor heat during the run up and the engine was operating at takeoff power. The accident is consistent with a loss of engine power due to the carburetor primary venturi, fuel nozzle, or both separating after takeoff. The reason for the separation could not be determined. 

Probable Cause and Findings

The National Transportation Safety Board determines the probable cause(s) of this accident to be:
A loss of engine power due to the carburetor primary venturi, fuel nozzle, or both separating after takeoff.

Findings

Aircraft
Fuel distribution - Damaged/degraded (Cause)

Factual Information 

On December 11, 2015, about 1400 central daylight time, a Globe GC-1B airplane, N78067, conducted a forced landing into a field shortly after departure from the Lake Elmo Airport (21D), St. Paul, Minnesota. The private rated pilot and one passenger sustained minor injuries and the airplane sustained substantial damaged. The airplane was registered to Phoenix Flyers, LLC, Stillwater, Minnesota, and operated by a private individual under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident and no flight plan was filed. The flight was originating at the time of the accident.

The pilot reported that the engine start-up and run-up were "great" and no anomalies were noted; carburetor heat was tested during the run-up. The pilot initiated the takeoff and the airplane climbed to about 100 ft above ground level (agl) when the engine power decreased from 2,400 rpm to 1,600 rpm. The pilot maneuvered the airplane to the right to avoid trees and made a forced landing to a field. The pilot noted that carburetor ice might have caused the loss of engine power and he did not have time to apply carburetor heat after the loss of power.

The pilot reported that the airplane had 1 hour of time in operation since the last annual inspection was accomplished on October 27, 2015.

At 1353, the St. Paul Downtown Airport weather observation, located about 9 miles southwest of the accident site, recorded wind from 090 degrees at 8 knots, 10 miles visibility, overcast cloud layer at 1,600 ft, temperature 37° F, dew point 32° F, and altimeter setting 29.75 inches of mercury. The carburetor icing probability chart included in Federal Aviation Administration Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin No. CE-09-35, Carburetor Icing Prevention, indicated that the airplane was operating in an area that was associated with a serious risk of carburetor ice accumulation at cruise power settings.

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) inspector performed a postaccident examination of the engine with the assistance of an engine mechanic. The examination revealed that the two-piece carburetor primary venturi was missing and subsequently could not be located during the course of the investigation.

The carburetor was sent to the NTSB Materials Laboratory, Washington, DC, for an examination, which revealed that the throttle body was fractured at the intake manifold attachment flange consistent with overstress fracture of cast aluminum. The fuel nozzle was not located in the nozzle installation hole within the fuel bowl piece and no portion was located in the screw threads. Gaskets associated with the nozzle and the gasket between the fuel bowl and the throttle body were also missing. The primary venturi portion of the two-piece venturi was missing. Sliding contact marks with a lip of material were observed at three locations on the throttle body adjacent to the main venturi, corresponding to contact with the three legs of the primary venturi. The contact marks had areas free of black deposits while areas adjacent to the marks were covered with deposits and the deposits on either side of the marks had not been disturbed. The interior of the air intake housing was viewed through the various available ports and none of the missing parts were found in the housing.

According to a representative of the carburetor manufacturer, the engine would likely start without these components, but it was unlikely that the engine would make much more than idle power without the parts installed.

Airworthiness Directive (AD) 98-01-06

According to AD 98-01-06, Precision Airmotive Corporation (now Marvel-Schebler Aircraft Carburetors) MA-3SPA carburetors with a two-piece venturi are to be inspected at each annual, 100-hour, or progressive inspection to determine if the primary venturi is loose or missing. According the maintenance logbooks, the last inspection per AD 98-01-06 that occurred before the accident was documented as accomplished on October 27, 2015.

History of Flight

Initial climb
Loss of engine power (partial) (Defining event)

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

Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 60, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 04/23/2014
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 06/06/2014
Flight Time:  455 hours (Total, all aircraft), 77 hours (Total, this make and model), 445 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 6 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 1 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: GLOBE
Registration: N78067
Model/Series: GC 1B NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 1946
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 2067
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tailwheel
Seats: 2
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 10/27/2015, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.:
Time Since Last Inspection:
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 437 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Continental Motors
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: C145-2
Registered Owner: PHOENIX FLYERS LLC
Rated Power: 145 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: KSTP, 711 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 10 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1353 CST
Direction from Accident Site: 245°
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Overcast / 1600 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 8 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 90°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting: 29.75 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 3°C / 0°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Lake Elmo, MN (21D)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Lake Elmo, MN (21D)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1400 CST
Type of Airspace: 

Airport Information

Airport: LAKE ELMO (21D)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 932 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Soft; Vegetation
Runway Used: 04
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 2496 ft / 75 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 1 Minor
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Minor
Latitude, Longitude:  45.001389, -92.845278 (est)

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