Sunday, February 10, 2019

Loss of Engine Power (Total): Cessna 172N Skyhawk, N3015E: Accident occurred December 24, 2018 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida

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

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Miami, Florida

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


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


https://registry.faa.gov/N3015E


Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Accident Number: ERA19LA079
Date & Time: 12/24/2018, 1344 EST
Registration: N3015E
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Loss of engine power (total)
Injuries: 4 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 

On December 24, 2018, about 1344 eastern standard time, a Cessna 172N, N3015E, was substantially damaged during a forced landing near Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The flight instructor, student pilot, and two passengers were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local instructional flight. The airplane was owned by Air Con LLC, and operated by Airplanes 4 Rent, under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. The flight originated from Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport (FXE), Fort Lauderdale, Florida, about 1330.

According to the flight instructor, they were flying along the shoreline at 800 ft above ground level (agl). The engine started to vibrate and then experienced a complete loss of power. The flight instructor tried to restart the engine twice, but the engine did not start. He set up for an emergency landing on the beach. At 200 ft. agl, he noticed a pier and knew he had to fly over the pier to make a safe landing on the other side. He tried to restart the engine for a third time and the engine restarted but did not produce power over 1,200 rpm. Once over the pier, he saw people on the beach and decided to land in the ocean. When the main landing gear touched the water, the airplane immediately flipped over. All four occupants egressed the airplane. During the landing, the vertical stabilizer and rudder were damaged.

Examination of the engine by a NTSB investigator revealed that the No. 2 exhaust rocker arm stud fractured. Engine continuity was established by rotating the propeller by hand and visually verifying that the pistons and push rods moved on all cylinders. No other anomalies were noted.

The rocker arm stud was sent to NTSB Materials Laboratory, Washington, DC, for examination. The examination of the fracture surface revealed characteristics consistent with a fatigue fracture. Review of maintenance records did not reveal if and when the stud was ever replaced or inspected during the major overhaul.

The four-seat, single-engine, high-wing airplane was built in 1978, and equipped with a Lycoming O-320-series engine. The most recent annual inspection was completed on December 19, 2018. At the time of the inspection, the airframe total time was 5,295.0 hours and the engine had 1,568.7 hours since major overhaul. The major overhaul was completed on May 10, 2006.

According to the airplane owner, he purchased the airplane in February 2018 from AIG insurance as a salvage purchase. The airplane was located in Belize City, Belize. The airplane was damaged by a trolley that rolled into it and damaged the left-wing strut, rudder, and elevator. He flew down, repaired the airplane, and flew it back to Fort Lauderdale. He performed an annual inspection in May 2018 and put it into rental service at that time. The airplane flew for 218 hours before the accident.

The flight instructor held a commercial pilot certificate, with a rating for airplane single-engine land, and instrument airplane. His most recent Federal Aviation Administration first-class medical certificate was issued on October 26, 2017. He reported 1,580.5 total hours of flight experience at the time of the accident.

Flight Instructor Information

Certificate: Flight Instructor; Commercial
Age: 25, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used:3-point 
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): Airplane Single-engine; Instrument Airplane
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 1 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 10/26/2017
Occupational Pilot: Yes
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 11/13/2017
Flight Time:  1580.5 hours (Total, all aircraft), 1500 hours (Total, this make and model), 1567.4 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft)

Student Pilot Information

Certificate: Student
Age: 27, Male
Airplane Rating(s):  None
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 3-point
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 1 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 07/26/2018
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N3015E
Model/Series: 172 N
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture:
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate: Normal
Serial Number: 17271404
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 12/19/2018, 100 Hour
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2299 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 20 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 5295 Hours as of last inspection
Engine Manufacturer: Lycoming
ELT: Installed
Engine Model/Series: O-320 SERIES
Registered Owner: Air Con Llc
Rated Power: 160 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: KOPF, 10 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 9 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1853 UTC
Direction from Accident Site: 269°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 4200 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: 30.1 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 22°C / 14°C
Precipitation and Obscuration: No Obscuration; No Precipitation
Departure Point: Fort Lauderdale, FL (FXE)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Fort Lauderdale, FL (FXE)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1330 EDT
Type of Airspace: 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 4 None
Latitude, Longitude: 25.909444, -80.120556 (est)



Location: Miami, FL
Accident Number: ERA19LA079
Date & Time: 12/24/2018, 1344 EDT
Registration: N3015E
Aircraft: Cessna 172
Injuries: 4 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Instructional 

On December 24, 2018, about 1344 eastern standard time, a Cessna 172N, N3015E, was substantially damaged during a forced landing near Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The flight instructor, student pilot, and two passengers were not injured. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and no flight plan was filed for the local instructional flight. The airplane was owned by Air Con LLC, and operated by Airplanes 4 Rent, under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91.

According to the flight instructor, they were flying along the shoreline at 800 ft above ground level (agl). The engine started to vibrate and then experienced a complete loss of power. The flight instructor tried to restart the engine twice, but the engine did not start. He set up for an emergency landing on the beach. At 200 ft. (agl) he noticed a pier and knew he had to fly over the pier to make a safe landing on the other side. He tried to restart the engine for a third time and the engine restarted but did not produce power over 1200 rpm. Once over the pier, he saw people on the beach and decided to land in the ocean. When the main landing gear touched the water, the airplane immediately flipped over. All four occupants egressed the airplane.

Examination of the engine revealed that the No. 2 exhaust rocker arm stud fractured. Engine continuity was established by rotating the propeller by hand and visually verifying that the pistons and push rods moved on all cylinders.

The four-seat, single-engine, high-wing airplane was built in 1978, and equipped with a Lycoming O-320-series engine. The most recent annual inspection was completed on December 19, 2018. At the time of the inspection, the airframe total time was 5295.0 hours and the engine had 1568.7 hours since major overhaul.

According to the airplane owner, he purchased the airplane in February 2018 from AIG insurance as a salvage purchase. The airplane was located in Belize City, Belize. The airplane was damaged by a trolley that rolled into it and damaged the left-wing strut, rudder and elevator. He flew down, repaired the airplane, and flew it back to Fort Lauderdale. He performed an annual inspection in May 2018 and put it into rental service at that time. The airplane flew for 218 hours before the accident.

The flight instructor held a commercial pilot certificate, with a rating for airplane single-engine land, and airplane multi-engine land. His most recent Federal Aviation Administration first-class medical certificate was issued on October 26, 2017. He reported 1,580.5 total hours of flight experience at the time of the accident.



Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information


Aircraft Make: Cessna
Registration: N3015E
Model/Series: 172 N
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Amateur Built: No
Operator: Airplanes 4 Rent
Operating Certificate(s) Held: Pilot School (141) 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site:
Condition of Light:
Observation Facility, Elevation: KOPF, 10 ft msl
Observation Time: 1353 UTC
Distance from Accident Site: 9 Nautical Miles
Temperature/Dew Point: 17°C / 11°C
Lowest Cloud Condition: Few / 4200 ft agl
Wind Speed/Gusts, Direction: 6 knots / , 350°
Lowest Ceiling:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Altimeter Setting: 30.25 inches Hg
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Departure Point: Fort Lauderdale, FL (FXE)
Destination: Fort Lauderdale, FL (FXE)

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: 2 None
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 4 None
Latitude, Longitude:  25.909444, -80.120556 (est)












AIRCRAFT:  1978 CESSNA 172N N3015E, s/n: 17271404

Last annual 12/19/18 at AFTT 5295                             

ENGINE:  Lycoming O-320-H2AD, s/n: L-4774-76

Last 100 hour 12/19/18 at Tach 5295, TSMOH 1568.7                              

PROPELLER:  McCauley 1C60/DTM, s/n: 734193

Last 100 hour 12/19/18 at Tach 5295, PTSMOH 1568.7, PTT 5295.0

EQUIPMENT:   All submerged in Salt Water.  

List needs confirmation. 

According to the storage facility:
Dual Garmin G5s
GMA 340
GNS 430
GNC 225
GTX transponder

DESCRIPTION OF ACCIDENT:  Engine failure during dual instruction flight training. Aircraft was ditched in the water off the beach and flipped over.
Per the NTSB preliminary report, the No. 2 exhaust rocker arm stud fractured resulting in a loss of engine power.

DESCRIPTION OF DAMAGES: Damage includes but may not be limited to:  The fuselage, wings and tail structure sustained extensive damage resulting from terrain impact and flipping over.  Further damage was caused as the rising tide caused the aircraft to become fully immersed in sand and salt water.

Read more here: http://www.avclaims.com

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